I have been editing a MG manuscript. In this manuscript's lifetime it has had approximately three different titles.
The original manuscript was written in late 2007, very early in my writing career. I usually write picture books and this was the first MG I had ever written. I now joke that the first time I wrote it, it was more like a large outline - only 9,600 words. But this was a lot of words for a picture book writer!
By July 2008 the word count had climbed up to 14,600 words.
In May 2011 it was at 17,400 words.
In March 2012 it was at 20,328 words.
Now, July 2013, it has climbed to 23,000 words.
I made the mistake of sending it out to publishers when it was at 9600 and 14,600 word stage. Live and learn. It was not ready.
I hear people say that your first manuscripts are only practice and usually not suitable for publication. They say forget about them and start writing other manuscripts.
I disagree with this. I say you should edit, edit and edit until your manuscript is ready for publication.
I like my stories. I am persistent and keep improving them in hopes that some day they will be published.
What do you do? Do you forget about your early manuscripts or do you like them enough to keep changing them until they are publishable?
Posted by Janet Smart on Creative Writing in the Blackberry Patch.