Thinking about that Birds and Bloom Backyard Blunder contest put me in mind of all kinds of blunders I’ve made, including those of the writing species. And so Friday, when I was trying to think up something to write for The Muffin, it didn’t take long for me to whip up a post.
You can read all about how I learn from making mistakes, particularly what I learned from the “writing of the chapter book” blunder I made. And here’s the rest of the story…
After I realized that my chapter book needed a ton of work, I got down to business on the rewrite. I punched up the main character, toned down the supporting cast of characters, defined the goals a bit better, straightened out a point-of-view problem…well, let’s just say I ended up with a new and muchly improved chapter book. And then you know what happened?
Wouldn’t it be really swell if I’d sold that manuscript? The sad fact is, I didn’t. But I did submit it for an evaluation at an SCBWI conference and found that it had a lot of wonderful components. I also found that even with a lot of wonderful parts, the book as a whole would probably not sell. Chapter books are a hard sell any way you look at it, but my chapter book was a little too different.
Now, another person may have been disappointed. Well, okay. I was a little disappointed. But still, I’d learned so much in the process of writing my first book. And one of the things I learned was that this chapter book really needed to be a middle grade book. And someday, when I figure out more about this story, I’ll write that middle grade book.
And that’s the rest of the story. Yes, I know. You were hoping for a happy ending. But then again, the story hasn’t really ended, has it?