According to the editor:

  • Please omit all unnecessary words (hopefully, pretty, really…words that add nothing to your work).
  • Double-check your punctuation..esp. with quotations.
  • 104 sentences begin with And. Please cut that in half.
  • 90 sentences start with But. Rewrite.
  • 23 start with Or. Rewrite
  • 158 start with So —rewrite dramatically.Readers do not want to read sentences like this – it develops a pattern of “boring”
  • Also, make sure you explain some of your concepts better.
  • Avoid abbreviating words that would be better off spelled out
  • Control your use of fragments.

Other than that, your characters are well rounded and the setting is beautifully painted.

I’m not surprised by the feedback. I tend to write like I speak, so I do over use words, sometimes. It’s my job as an author to catch myself doing that and write in a more universal style that strengthens the story while keeping true to myself, my voice, and my characters.

I was more than a little afraid the characters and plot had some big holes in them. Since they don’t, I can continue to work on the other books while using Spirit as a foundation. I think, though, instead of trying to tackle another book, I’ll just worry about getting Spirit back to the publisher. I don’t want to be the reason it’s delayed in any way.

Needless to say, I’m very excited.