…went well, considering. She was confused and I was just as confused and couldn’t answer many of her questions about what was going on or why the characters did what they did. But that’s because a lot of it just came out in the first draft and I didn’t know why. But she was really nice about it and kept saying it was a huge achievement to have written the first draft and that it was understandable that I was in such a muddle. And she told me that the problems all came down to needing to know what was going on behind the scenes, particularly in terms of character motivation. She suggested I write extra scenes to figure it all out and emailed me a questionnaire to get to know the characters better. Best of all, she told me to slow down and take it easy – just do 1 hour a day of writing exercises and go for long walks on the beach. I had been planning on ploughing on with the rewriting, at least of the 15k I need to do by the end of August, but I do need to figure it all out first. Well, maybe not all of it. We’ve agreed that I’ll submit the opening – the ending came off melodramatic on its own – it’s meant to be but it needs to be built up to and I can see why it wouldn’t come off well without the rest of the novel to do that.
Also, I was talking to my friend last night and she suggested I send the opening to an agent because they take so long to get back to you, by the time they do you’ll have finished the rest. So that’s another reason to focus on the beginning. Would be good to make use of the few contacts I’ve gained here before I leave.