The adrenaline rush from that lasts approximately one and a half minutes after I have pressed the send button to my structural editor. Then the worry starts. Is it good enough? What if there are plot holes?
What if she doesn't like it? WHAT IF SHE DOESN'T LIKE IT? WHAT IF SHE DOESN'T LIKE IT?
These are all normal panics for a writer. But, of course, once your book baby is given to the publisher, it has to grow up very quickly. However much I've tried to make it so, I know my novel child is not perfect. It needs a little outside help to polish the rough edges. I really enjoy being challenged by my Lovely Editor at this structural edit stage. I like being asked questions, I like the fact that someone else has read what I've written with close attention and really thought long and hard about how to make my words work even harder to get my story across. Of course, some things I will fight to keep. In CHOSEN, which comes out next March, there was a long debate about the merits or not of hot camel piss and spilled viscera among other knotty problems. But mostly I am happy to agree, to rewrite, to cut if something is heavy or unnecessary to the main plot. What I like best though, is that I now have someone to whom my characters are as real as they are to me, someone I can discuss them with, who doesn't think I'm mad when I say 'but do you think Khai is really convincing when he says/does that - or does he just look like a needy muppet?'.
Editors' Course at The Golden Egg Academy. His skills most certainly need passing on to the newest generation - and all us writers will be grateful if they are. A good copy editor is worth his or her weight in great big golden ducats.
OUT NOW from Orchard, Cleo (UKYA historical fantasy about the teenage Cleopatra VII) '[a] sparkling thriller packed with historical intrigue, humour, loyalty and poison.' Amanda Craig, New Statesman
Also out now: new Beasts of Olympus series "rippingly funny" Publishers Weekly US starred review
Lucy teaches a regular Guardian Masterclass on 'How to Write for Children'
Lucy is represented by Sophie Hicks at The Sophie Hicks Agency