Whenever I get an email from my mentor with the subject line, "Your submission," I stare at my inbox for a while, taking short, shallow breaths. I wonder, should I open it right away? But what if it's really negative comments? Maybe I should open the other, safer emails--from my husband, or occasionally, something actually work related? That's what I did this time, taking care of a few easy tasks while that big scary email stared at me from my inbox.
And when I did finally open it, my jaw clenched, I breathed a sigh of relief. She called my work a "pleasure to read"! I was really happy with the story I submitted, so I was extra scared that she wouldn't be. I definitely have a lot of revising work ahead though. She points out (correctly) that my plot is nowhere near as strong as my characters, so I have to work on that minor (haha) thing. It was a little disheartening that, at the end of her comments she wrote:
"My expectations are that it will be a major revision, which means really thinking about what does and doesn't work, going at the piece with a ruthless pen, and trying lots of ideas out. What you end up with as a second draft may feel further off the mark to you, but it's part of the process of breaking a story down and rebuilding it to discover what it's really about."
The idea of ending up further off the mark makes me want to cry. Stupid process.
But anyway, overall, I am delighted to know that at least I was not deluding myself that this story was on the way to being something.