It wasn’t easy to do; there was some good stuff in there. It’s just that I wanted to start with the voice of the main character. I added some at the start of the now-first chapter, giving the style of prose I do best a workout right at the top. Now, three paragraphs in, the reader will either be saying, “All right, this guy can take me for a ride,” or she will be quite right to put the book aside. Before, readers had to hang with me a while before I gave them a compelling reason to do so.
I won’t submit the revised work for a couple of weeks at least; it needs time to gestate, and there are still some rough spots to smooth over. (I still want to work in a subtle promise that at least one major character that you will really like is going to die.) Additionally, I’m working up a new cover letter with more detail about the story. It seems I have been short-changing myself by trying to keep the description down to two or three sentences. I don’t even remember where I heard that advice, but I’m glad to hear from reliable sources that’s it’s just plain wrong.
I submitted an earlier draft of my cover letter to another Web site for constructive ridicule, but it’s looking like I missed out on the constructive part. I’d point you there, but the cover letter contains spoilers. If you really, really want to see it, let me know. The ridicule part may turn out to be pretty entertaining. We’ll see when the joke is sprung.
By the way, I would like to thank Jojo for her critique of the new opening. Thanks, Jojo!