To Wait or Not…


Writing (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


To Wait or Not…


Traci Kenworth




So, I’ve got this dilemma. Now that I’ve finished my first draft of my current wip, I’m


not sure how long to wait in-between drafts. I’ve gone a couple weeks already since writing “the end.” I’m wondering if I should wait another two, or perhaps longer. You see, when I start “tearing things apart” or as we like to call, “editing,” I tend to take a long time doing so. And before you know it, the holidays are going to be upon us. I’ve read that agents don’t like their e-mail boxes cluttered during that time.


I’m excited about this book. I think it could possibly be “the one.” The trouble is, I don’t


want to rush it. I get all butterfly-feeling inside when I think of doing things wrong. Yet, I know that I also tend to procrastinate when it comes time to query and hold myself back when I should be pressing forward. I don’t think there’s too much to be changed, as far as major plot points right now. Though that may change after I get the results back from my beta readers perhaps. I’ve already sent it the rounds through my cps.


This morning, I came up with a cool new idea for another short story(I’ve already


finished one.) I could start that while I’m doing the waiting game. It should be time to polish the finished short story after that. There’s things to do. It’s just a matter of whether I want to put aside LATWD longer or shove into the editing phase. The way things look, if I do wait and get caught in the holiday crunch, it may be next year before I can query it. I’m not sure I want to wait that long.


Opinions? How long do you usually wait before digging into edits? Has there ever been a


time you’ve felt you rushed it? Or taken too long to get back to it?






25 thoughts on “To Wait or Not…

    1. Thanks, Sara!! It is hard to decide what to do. Usually I rush in and I so don’t want to do that this time around. I want to take my time and get things right. I guess I’m leaning on the waiting side. Lol.


  1. I think another week would be good. For me, there’s gotta be at least two weeks difference. Otherwise I’m still too “close” to the story. But that could be different for you. CONGRATS and YAY for being done! Can’t wait to see what happens!


  2. Thanks, Vanessa!! I just got another short story idea this morning and I’m thinking I may take the next week or so to write it and then get back to LATWD. I’ll also have that first short story I wrote to polish in the meantime. I’m SO excited about everything right now. I guess I just find myself in fast-forward and need to pause for a bit. Lol.


  3. I wait until the feeling hits to get back to it, ‘my characters call me.’ However, I have noticed that when another story hits me, I outline (if I am still on the first one) and put it aside. Short stories and articles don’t hurt while I’m writing. However, above all, please keep the original manuscript. I find sometimes after 3-4 edits and come back to the original it was better than I thought it was. That’s how I do it. We all have to go with our inner soul so I am just showing not telling. Good luck and thanks 4 the follow on twitter, I will be following you. Blessings, Janet


  4. I swear we twins. I’m looking at being ready just after the holiday season, too. When the slush piles are out of control.

    I ended up giving my first draft well over a month vacation, because I was editing another book. It was the best thing I could do for it. I’ll do the same thing when my current WIP needs a long vacation. I’ll work on the first draft of my next project.


    1. Hello, sister!! I know, the slush piles being out of control are what scare me. Especially if agents are in the, “let’s just empty the emails into the trash,” mood. Not saying they do that, but I know when my emails get out of control, I’m tempted to. Lol. I started that other short story last night. I figure it’ll give me another week or two to finish and I can polish my first short story along the way too. This should put me at a month’s wait, and I think that’ll be good. Working on the first draft of the next project sounds good too. I usually do that while I have my story out with the beta readers.


  5. Perhaps it would be best to wait to hear what your beta readers have to say before jumping into editing. Fiddle with your short stories while you wait and then jump into editing with both feet. If you have to wait until after the Christmas rush to start your inquiries, better to do that than to run through your ms too quickly and miss something crucial. Just me opinion of course. Good luck. 🙂


    1. Thanks!! I usually edit again after I send it out to beta readers. They’re sort of my last stop on eyes to see it before I sub. I find a rigorous round of edits after they look at it to be a great help.


  6. Hey lady,
    I think maybe giving it a little more time to sit is great. For me, it depends on the stories. Some I step away from for a few weeks, others I dive right into edits. It depends though if I’m on a time constraint/or deadline. ((HUGS))–can’t wait to hear about your short story!!!


    1. Thanks, Rebekah!! I actually have a second short story I’m working on right now. So I should have two to go in-between starting edits on LATWD. Yeah, I’m thinking that waiting a month is a good idea. I’ll just keep busy doing other writing while I wait. And, if I have to wait till after the holidays, I will always have my next project to keep busy with.


  7. Hi, Traci. I usually wait two weeks between drafts, but that’s if no one is reading the manuscript. Once I get feedback, I collect it, synthesize it, and then give it another go. Depending on reader turn around this could be a month or so. So, I think you should wait until you get feedback from your readers. Christmas? That’s editing fast. Don’t rush it.

    My two bits . . .


  8. I have a feeling I’ll be in a similar situation at the end of this month. I’m so excited about my WIP, but I can’t decide if I should jump into revisions when its finished or let it sit for a month.


    1. I’ve firmly decided on the month wait. Then when I finish edits, I’ll send out to betas, work on something else while it’s gone, and when I get it back edit again. Yeah, this will probably all be a first of the year submission but at least I’ll know I gave it my best. It’s tough to know how long to wait but it’s better to give it that extra time than to rush it. Thanks, C.B.!!


  9. It’s always hard to know how long is the right amount of time, but I think longer is better than shorter just because you are worried about rushing. Don’t think about the agents, or the holidays. Do this book right…it might take several deep long revisions to get it to where it needs to be.

    What I would do is read a few books on craft in areas that you struggle in, or areas that you suspect might be ‘problem’ areas for this manuscript. Make notes, and think about your book as you read. You will start to collect ideas on how to improve those aspects in your book, and the revision will go smoother as a result when youre ready to get started on it. 😉


    1. Thanks, Angela!! I’ve decided to give it a month, then do a read-through before beginning chap edits to get it ready for betas. Then when I get it back, of course, more edits. Lol. It’s that editing game we all love to hate. And, you’re right, I think the extra time will help me pinpoint areas that need work and distance me enough to do so. No hurrying here but that’s okay with me.


  10. I waited for at least a month before I started every stage in rewrites, revisions and edits.Sometimes I waited even longer. Remember, yes you can rush to get done before the holidays, but isn’t it better to have a properly edited story and then wait until Februay rather than rush and get a bunch of rejections?


    1. You’re so right, Misha!! Waiting will be better than getting doled out this rejections in the end. I’m occupying my time still with the short stories, almost finished with last one and then it’ll be polishing the two of them before I start edits and I’ll have exactly a month in. Where did the time go? Lol.


  11. I wait anywhere between a week and a month between edits. Sometimes, it really helps to get that extra distance.

    I’d say give it extra time if you feel like you need to, and give it whatever time you and beta readers feel it needs in edits. My book took months longer in edits than I’d planned, but it was SO worth it to get it that extra step toward being better. If that pushes querying into next year for you, that’s okay. A few months in the publishing world isn’t very long, and your book will be that much better. 🙂


    1. Thanks, Shallee!! I’m going on a month at the end of this week. I plan to start a read-through next week and then slowly work on edits from there. After betas, I’ll probably give it another month before tackling more changes. I feel like I have given it a good bit of time to free up some distance in my mind and ideas are trickling in on what to do from here on out. I don’t think that would’ve happened, if I’d rushed it.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.