I've just started polishing the second draft, I'll probably end up changing enough to call it a third draft. :)
The break has been longer than intended, for a range of mostly boring reasons. But looking on the bright side, the extended break will give me a bit more perspective. Just 20 pages in, I've already noticed this. I thought the first 50 pages were pretty solid, but already I've found quite a few typos and clumsy language.
Which brings me to my next point. I don't know what it's like for other writers trying to 'break through' but I find I vacillate between frenzied terror brought on by the fear that I'm missing opportunities ALL THE TIME and lethargy/apathy, thinking that there's no way I'm going to 'make it'.
Somewhere is the sweet spot, where I get my best work done and manage to not make irrational decisions that may damage my real opportunities.
I've been thinking about submitting Skin Deep to the Pac Mac Manuscript Monday, but I want to make sure I send them something that represents the best writing I'm capable. At the back of my mind is the frenzied terror guy, screaming that they could close subs AT ANY MINUTE... but I'm trying not to listen to him. If I send them something crap, it will do more harm than good, right?
However, at the other end of the scale is the guy that's telling me there's no point subbing anything, anytime -- because I suck. So, at some point, you have to make the decision that it's as good as it's going to get, and then send it out. Because if you don't send it out, they can't say 'yes'!
I'm still fairly happy with what I've achieved this year. The schedule has slipped a bit. But I'm still hoping to have something halfway decent in the hands of my beta readers in time for Christmas holidays.