For the first time in history…

I am entering new territory. Charting new waters. Breaking new ground (for me, anyway). For the first time ever, I have sent part of a novel for critique.

I am a picture book writer. Or I was. Or actually, I still am AND I’d like to write novels. And by chance,I will be in the States and in Washington, DC on the day of the SCBWI Mid-Atlantic one day conference. And I’ll have the chance to have a manuscript critiqued. I almost played it safe and sent in a picture book that I had confidence in. But what I’m really unsure about, and what I really need help in, is this novel I’m working on (and passionate about, btw.) So, I took a deep breath, eeked out a synopsis and polished the first two chapters.

I am alternately terrified and elated. Mostly, I just wanted to send in a cover sheet that says:

DISCLAIMER: I am a picture book writer who knows nothing about writing novels. PLEASE HELP ME.

But I refrained. I’m trusting the process. I’m trusting that even though I’m not where I want to be right now in knowing how to write a novel, I’m gathering tools along the way. Maybe this critique will give me some of what I need to pull this novel together. For now, though, I’m still catching my breath that I’m letting anyone see it. 🙂

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32 thoughts on “For the first time in history…

  1. Yay!!!

    I’m so proud of you, Kristy.

    Just know you’re not the only one out of your element. I have been in novel-mode since mid-June. It’s been fun and scary and grueling. Sometimes I find myself longing for the chance to get back with cowboys, frogs, chickens, and monsters. 🙂

    1. I’m so glad I’m not alone. Novels are bigger and broader and all that. I can wrap my brain around most of my pbs, but novels get all wily on me and feel hard to contain. But I’m not giving up!

    2. I’m so glad I’m not alone. Novels are bigger and broader and all that. I can wrap my brain around most of my pbs, but novels get all wily on me and feel hard to contain. But I’m not giving up!

      1. I’m reminded of something Kirby Larson said in LA — She gave a quote from Russell Hoban (I think from A Mouse and His Child): “You’ve got to take those daring leaps or you’re nowhere.”

    1. I know what you mean! It’s hard to be a writer of one language, living in the culture of another. (Even though I can speak and read German, it sure ain’t the same as writing it. SOO impressed by people like Joseph Conrad now!!)

      Stock up on books while you’re there!

  2. I admire you PB authors. I’ve tried, and the results have been sad and embarrassing. But maybe one day I’ll be as brave as you and send a PB in for a critique.

    Have fun at the conference. 🙂

  3. What a great opportunity! It takes courage to write (and even more to show others) a novel. It took me forever to even show my work to my family. You’ll enjoy the conference. Critiques are invaluable–you’ll find what you’re doing right as well as things to improve. It is great you love your story. Being passionate about your story is most important.
    Have fun.

  4. I’m late to your post about this, since I just came over from your friend-added email, but I still wanted to comment and offer my congratulations. I remember taking this leap about four years ago and shaking the whole time my critique person talked. You’ll be so happy you did this, especially because you’re so passionate about your manuscript. Let us know how it goes!

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