Writing a Book (Part 5): Receiving feedback from the publishers

Source: Art for Serious People www.ayearinfowey.blogspot.co.uk
Source: Art for Serious People http://www.ayearinfowey.blogspot.co.uk

Yup, I have feedback on my manuscript! I have to say, I was a little concerned. The publishers gave me a brief for the book but said I could “deviate” from it as I saw fit.

So I did.

In fact, I wrote seven brand new chapters. (I like to make extra work for myself.) So I was more than a little worried about what they would think.

The Feedback Email arrived last week, roughly two weeks after I sent the completed manuscript off. I opened it and scanned it for signs of words like “disaster”, “not good enough” and “rewrite the entire book please”… and breathed a sigh of relief.

I won’t repeat the whole email verbatim because that feels wrong when the editor concerned hasn’t given their permission, but in a nutshell, he said he was “seriously impressed” and “blown away” by the amount of work I had put into the book.

OK, so I hadn’t hit heights of genius (in 7-8 weeks that was probably pushing it, anyway), but all the same… phew!

Now the editing begins. I have 3-5 days to look at the publisher’s suggestions and make any changes required (most of which I agree with; a few of which, I don’t).

In the meantime, I have renewed appreciation for all writers and artists out there, trying to make a living from their work. I came across a perfect example of this whilst I was in Cornwall last week, recharging my batteries. Dino De Zorzi creates fantastic, quirky three-dimensional figures which he sells in his ‘Art for Serious People’ gallery in Fowey. (The name says it all. If you look at his work and don’t smile, there’s something wrong with you.) What I especially love is how he’s written a story to go with each figure. Check it out here… Anyway, the reason I’m telling you this is because in his gallery window, he had placed a quote which struck a chord:

“When you buy from an independent artist you are buying more than just a painting or a novel or a song. You are buying hundreds of hours of experimentation and thousands of failures. You are buying days, weeks, months, years of frustration and moments of pure joy. You are buying nights of worry about paying the rent, having enough money to eat, having enough money to feed the children, the birds, the dog. You aren’t just buying a thing. You are buying a piece of heart, part of a soul, a private moment in someone’s life. Most importantly, you are buying that artist more time to do something they are truly passionate about; something that makes all of the above worth the fear and the doubt; something that puts the life into the living.”

– Rebekah Joy Plett

Isn’t that brilliant?

2 thoughts on “Writing a Book (Part 5): Receiving feedback from the publishers”

  1. Ahhh that’s where the quote came from. It does strike a chord with me, except for the bit about feeding kids. I eat so much I might as well be feeding a second person.

    Great news that feedback from the publishers has been positive on the whole. I’m not surprised they were impressed with how hard you’ve worked! You’ve been a machine. Anyway, best of luck with the re-writing/editing. xx


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