STAGE EIGHT: RE-WRITES, EDITS, & REVISIONS
One of the most important parts to being an author is being receptive to feedback, being able to mold and adapt, and knowing the difference between harsh criticism and constructive criticism. The most important thing is that you are getting your product in multiple hands and under many sets of eyes.
My process is pretty straight forward.
1. Write the first draft
2. Find 2-5 betas to read through and give you feedback
3. Implement changes based off of feedback
4. Send out for another round of beta reading
5. Implement changes based off of feedback
6. Send to editor
7. Implement changes based off of editor feedback
8. Send out for ARC beta reading
With the process that I follow, I tend to have my manuscript looked over by upwards of 15-25 people before it ever gets out into the world. I feel like this way I am always putting my best foot forward and presenting myself in the right way.
We all know that not every book is going to appeal to every reader, because of this, sometimes you are going to get the occasional 1 or 2 star review. You know the ones that make your heart plummet and your mouth dry? Well, be prepared. They will come. What's important is how you deal with them after the fact. First off, read through the review thoroughly, does the reviewer seem knowledgeable on the plot of the story? Does the reviewer make any valid points when discussing pain points in the book?
Some of the best feedback I have ever received was from 1 and 2 star reviews. It hurt, of course, but there have been times that I have taken the constructive criticism I received, and implemented it into my story, making it better than it ever was. I am a firm believer that constructive criticism takes a book from good to great.
Moral of this chapter? Be open and receptive to feedback, it may make your story even stronger than you ever imagined.