The upshot of this weekend's critique of my novel by an agent, publishing editor, and writing instructor is: It's lovely writing, but change everything.
Change the main character.
Change the plot.
Change the opening.
Change the motivations.
Start from SCRATCH!
This morning I'm watching the gray ocean from the balcony of my temporary condo, and I'm laughing.
So essentially I asked these people, What do you think about my book?
And they said, Write a different book.
And I'm thrilled!
Like everyone else who's an ordinary writer, I know when my work needs work and even when I'm happy with something, I sense it could be better. I spent my career editing things.
But sometimes the mechanics of HOW and WHAT elude me. That's what I've got this weekend. The what and the how, from people who sell books and people who read them.
Nobody told me I'd be better off in a different line of work. That's a relief!