September 22, 2019 : Revisions Continue
While many writers new to publishing think that once a manuscript is under contract with a publisher, the work is done, that could not be further from the truth. That is when the real work of revising and rewriting begins. That is where I am right now with my third book to be published.
Like my first two, this is a middle grades fiction, but unlike my first two- it is contemporary fiction, not historical fiction. The drafting of this was definitely a new experience for me. Since it was not historical fiction, there was not that intense research that is so important when crafting an historical fiction novel. As an elementary school teacher, much of the 'research' was simply drawing on my experiences with, and observations of, elementary school kids.
Because it was not historical fiction, I also had to seek a different publisher than the one who published my first two books. That was a long and arduous process. But luck was with me and I did find a wonderful publisher who was willing to take a chance on me and my book. Even before offering me a contract though, she told me the story needed some major revisions and was I willing to work with her editor to make the story better? Of course!!!
That was nearly two months ago and it has been a busy couple of months. The editor I am working with is clearly brilliant, and her feedback and guidance has been extremely helpful. I must admit, it is not always easy to accept feedback that shows you the weakness in your plot, or the gaps in your character development. Some of the suggestions have even sparked significant shifts in the characters and plot. That is hard for a writer, as we do become very attached to our characters, and their story.
The last set of revisions was submitted a week ago, and as I wait for her feedback, ( which I am sure will spark more revisions) I have been working on a couple of other writing projects. I finalized and submitted a children's picture book manuscript to the SCBWI Contest. This is a genre in which I have never been published, so it is truly outside of my comfort zone, but was so fun.
Additionally, the latest issue of Social Studies and the Young Learner magazine came out. This is the publication of the National Council for the Social Studies and this issue features my article on Teaching the Civil Rights Movement, using my book Forcing Change. So excited to get this into the hands of more teachers and more kiddos!