The last of my first readers are reporting in, and I am rewriting in small chunks where I see I’ve failed to make a point. When an intelligent woman points and says, “Huh?” I have to reexamine how I got that reaction. Fortunately, there haven’t been many.
I love my first readers — they keep me from going completely off course. They provide the reality check that not everyone has access to the contents of my head, and a good thing, too; it’s a tumbled, rumpled jackdaw’s nest in there, and not suitable for rummaging through — you’ll get speared by some sharp pointy factoid. Far better for me to provide a selected handful of information, preferably wrapped around a plot and draped over a couple of hot men.
My first readers also provide a microcosm of the wider audience. Everything from “I love your topic” to “I don’t know a thing about this topic but you make it work” to “I love you but the topic is a yawner.” Okay, not everyone is going to bring the same level of enthusiasm to trading in stocks and bonds, although I admit my reaction to that last was “Money isn’t sexy?”
My hedge fund traders think money’s fun, money’s sexy, money’s to be captured in great handfuls, kept, and encouraged to grow. One character even suggests throwing large sums on the floor and rolling in it, which is a fine thought until you meet the ‘rollee’. If I ever win the lottery, I fully intend to do just this thing.
These last bits of rewrite are bitter-sweet; I’ve lived with this project for about a year, and the tweaks have the flavor of adjusting your son’s tie before he puts on cap and gown to fetch his diploma. I’m ready for The Rare Event to launch, yet a bit hesitant to let go.
And may neither son nor story come home to live in the basement.