When I first had WHHITC bound, I gave it to a few people to read through so that they could give me some feedback.
After sitting down, and talking it through, with the first two people to finish I made a few changes. Some minor, some major. I amended the preview books that hadn’t gone out yet, and recalled two that had. Only JB, SKG, and The Bear read the book before the changes. They have a; slightly different chapter seven, Ben being a little meaner, an extra scene with Mrs. Palcznski, and an epilogue.
The epilogue was quite a difficult scene to cut. I liked it. I liked what was going on, and I liked what it did. But the consensus was that the end was stronger without it.
Was it the right thing to do? I’m not sure.
Should I put it back…? I don’t know.
I am going to use that scene though in As Yet Untitled.
And if you’d like to read it for yourself? If you’d like some clue as to where I’m going with As Yet Untitled? Please send me an e-mail at; email@example.com.
After having already amended two of the draft copies, following JB’s suggestion*, I’ve now recalled another copy and made several changes to the final third. Whilst the changes themselves are only quite minor, they should help prevent misunderstandings that both JB and SKG had when reading it, and removes a reference to a film that really doesn’t need to be there.
*which was quite a drastic change, which doesn’t change the story, but will hopefully make the end stronger.
Posted in Book 1
Tagged Feedback, JB, SKG
I met up with SKG again yesterday, and they gave me their feedback on the entire book. Which was quite exciting as they’re the first person to have read the entire thing.
Now, I’d been warned beforehand that they had a lot of notes and questions. But I didn’t really expect it to be five hours worth. Amongst which was that; they love Frank, dislike Kirsten, and don’t like the way Ben talks. I think if I had been sent their notes I’d now be a complete an utter mess, but because we were able to talk through them and discuss their reasoning behind them it gives me something to work with. They also had a lot of questions; as to why did this happen? Would they really do that? Did you mean to do that? And the occasional ‘I don’t get it’. Which were all really quite interesting. Some bit’s I simply hadn’t been clear enough with, other bit’s will need to be spelled out, and some of the rest was actually meant to not be clear-cut. I was also given some examples of when ‘less is more’ is a bad thing, but also when it’s a good thing.
So, a lot to do, a lot to work with, and it was all only one persons opinion. So with the bit’s that they didn’t get I’m going to wait until some of the others get back to me to see whether they did or not, to work out as to whether it’s me being unclear or it’s them being ever so slightly dim (although it’s probably going to be the former). Either way, I need to dial it up to eleven.
But regardless of what lies ahead, I’m massively grateful for how much time and thought SKG put into their feedback and their patience with me whilst talking me through it. Thank you again by the way.
I spent a good hour and a half yesterday afternoon talking to someone about With His Head In The Clouds, and it turned out to be one of the most surreal experiences I think I have ever had. It didn’t appear to be all that odd to me at the time, although they kept trying to tell me that it was. That we were sat there talking about a book that I have written. But afterwards, I kept thinking about what they had said. We were talking about a book I had written, about people who had previously only existed in my head. To have someone talk back to me about how they had imagined my characters to dress… or show concern over how much they drink… it’s just so, so, weird.