Today, my task is to read aloud my story. I'm listening for flow, pacing, structure. Yes, I've done this several times in the last few years as I've rewritten, edited, and tried hard to figure out what I needed to improve to have it accepted by an agent or a publisher.
Today though, I'm reading it for me. This is not the absolutely last time I'll have a chance to see my story before it becomes a book, but the manuscript does have to be in near-perfect condition before I send it off to the publisher for layout purposes. I also want it to be as close to perfection before sending it to published authors Jane Tesh and to Claire Wharton, both of whom have agreed to write reviews for the back cover. A third review from James Bartley has already been secured. As former site manager, he was gracious enough to help me when I researched my story's location, NC Historic Site Brunswick Town. He's now moved up the food chain to another position in the NC Cultural Resources division, and agreed to have his comments captured on the back cover. Simply put, he said it was "an awesome story" -- I couldn't have asked for better for my first novel.