My first draft for Lucy’s story was about 60K, and I was panicked. I love the idea of this story, and I was heartbroken that I felt I had reached the end but missed the genre’s minimum by 20K. I knew, of course, that I had rushed things and that there were subplots that needed to be added, so I went through another round, and little by little, word by word, I reached 76K.
I was spent, though, and I was afraid to do anything else with the story because I didn’t want just to add word count – it had to be substance and story. So, I sent her off to three beta readers – and one has already returned her to me. (Thanks, Cody!)
I had intended to do a line edit when I went through each of the readers’ feedback, but it’s finals week, and there is an avalanche of papers coming in, so yesterday I simply sat and read through his feedback. He had some great points of places that felt rushed (partly in my effort just to get the story down – but also partly because I wasn’t sure a reader would care about those particular moments) and noted where he’d like more “showing”.
And little by little, the word count crept up – and she hit 80K. It was a relief – more so because it wasn’t just me aiming for the word count – it was adding in needed details and story. So thank you to Cody for getting me and Lucy over that hurdle.
Now to figure out a title while I wait for the others. 🙂