As I read through the draft of a critiqued submission to the New Writers’ Scheme of the Romantic Novelists’ Association, my admiration for the readers grows. it takes a particular type of generosity to spend the time and energy needed with beginners’ work. I thought this book was the best it could be when I sent it in a few years ago.
Goodness, wasn’t I wrong?
It’s not a bad book. It has two wonderful central characters. It has a supporting cast of well drawn people and the reader thought only one verged on pantomime. It has few historical errors. It has plot, colour, historical detail, horses, frocks and interesting ideas.
It has a Voice and it’s well written in good grammatical English.
…and that’s where the particular skills and generosity of the Readers comes into play…
,,,it isn’t good enough. She helped me understand that.
Some temples are bigger and more decorated than others. Some temples have stood the blast of time. They weren’t built in a day and neither can a writing career be. Early blueprints need refinement.
As the year comes round to the RNA’s Summer party and the Joan Hessayon Award short list for first time published romance writers whose book went through the scheme, I remember that. My book, Mariah’s Marriage was a contender last year.
Bella’s Betrothal was not in the scheme, but it couldn’t have happened without that first one. A third novel has gone out for consideration and in the meantime, I’m getting on with the next.