Gave one of the babes and my eldest child the epilogue and first ten pages of Birthright. Neither were particularly impressed. Both said I can do better. Eldest said: Mum, we need to be REPULSED by the witches. And then terrified when Hecate turns up. What is it you are always saying to your students? It's all about reader response!'
Babe said lovely positive things but also specific comments about voice and characterisation.
Thanks to Mackenna and Penelope. I do think the bones are there but I really, really appreciate your honest reader response. Now gonna go back and have more fun with the witches, and girls, make the first chapter un-put-downable!
Even though there is a wee person inside of me going 'wahhhh', I have faith in these two to care enough to take very seriously their comments.
Currently having fun trusting in my own author's voice (this was the problem, I think, that I was changing the way I really write to please what I think others expect!)
It is like re-painting a house (I know about such an experience having spent a couple of summers working for painters). You've got to ensure the energy goes into the preparation and then make sure the ingredients are top notch.
Anyway, I'm appreciative of the advice and now will spend the next few days re-working what I have been polishing.
Am buoyed that Bloodlines is doing so well.