There is a certain thud in my stomach as I finish book two, When the Music Stops: A Second Chance to Dance. It’s a mixture of pride, fear and excitement. I did it! Will anyone read it? Will anyone like the way the characters made their decisions? Will people stick around for book three?
But I get ahead of myself. I’m finished, but my wonderful editor has yet to ‘take a crack’ at the story. She asks amazing questions, shares her ideas and we go back and forth until we reach agreement on the best way to make the story stronger. When I write I see what I think is the best direction but I’m blinded by the fact that Marta and her fellow characters are almost real to me. That’s why an impartial editor is so important.
For this book I also asked a friend who is an editor to take first looks at the story. Her expertise makes it abundantly clear that I am a poor editor of my own work. I self-correct my errors in my head but they don’t make it to the page. I forget commas and leave extra spaces. I need her clear eyes and questions to help me prepare for the editor so I don’t look like a doofus. Thank you, Gretchen. You’re not only a great first editor; you’re also a dear friend and an amazing writer.
Stay tuned. I’ll keep you in the loop as the book progresses through the various people’s hands as it moves toward publication. Feel free to send me questions about the process. I’ll do my best to answer them.