Madeleine Marsh


As the book moves into beta...

As a writer the scariest thing I do is to put my work out for others to read.  Up until now that has simply meant releasing stories onto various websites for fellow fans to read.  But last Sunday afternoon I sent the draft of The House at the End of the World to my two brave and wonderful beta readers, Linda and Sue.  I've been re-writing the story at internals over the last two years and re-working it for the last two months.  I'm as happy with it as I can be at this stage, and quite attached to my characters now, and I'm expecting at least another two re-writes before February.

Even with a short two-pager I'll tend to re-write it a couple of times before posting and in doing so I tend to start to read what I think is on the page instead of what actually is.  Many fanfic writers use beta or proof readers.  I did for a few years.  But now-a-days I don't tend to; I'm usually in too much of a hurry to get it posted and out of the way before I've re-written it so often I've changed every single word.  Bad feedback - or flaming - on the internet is easy to ignore.  Most people reading on Archive Of Our Own (AO3) don't bother leaving feedback for fic they don't like.  But I post all over the place and  I have had some wonderfully irate readers mail me over the years telling me how bad or disgusting or even sinful my stories are - one particular reader made it to the final scene of a 120,000 word epic before deciding he hated the whole thing and mailing me to say so!

But for now I'm nervous as hell.  It is one thing to post a short or even long story to the internet, it's another sending my first original novella to people I've specifically asked to pull it apart.  I'm just hoping that they don't come back saying 'don't give up the day job' because in mid-December until the book is launched in late February, that's exactly what I'm doing.

Oh, and of course there's the small matter of the other convention programme items needing to be prepped by then, not just the book!

Last updated: 2013-08-25 13:06:54

Please note that all comments are moderated