Okay, I did it. I wrote that dreaded second draft. I went through my notes and addressed all the issues (that I could see--I'm sure there are more). I made my characters stronger. I've checked to make sure I don't have a sagging middle. I showed instead of told. I've tried to incorporate a bit of foreshadowing, I've fixed those questionable sentences. I reread all 110 pages of research to check my facts. I've even gone through the manuscript and attempted to take out unnecessary truly's, well's, just's, and so's, cutting almost 100 words in the process.
Now, on to the polishing.
James Scott Bell says to do a scene read-through. Make sure you're hooking the reader from the beginning. Draw out suspenseful scenes. Delay information, make sure there are enough surprises. Then go on to a dialogue read-through. Cut unnecessary words, add conflict into dialogue, even among allies.
Almost done. Even then, after all my hard work, I know my story will fall short. I'll be sending it to my critique group this week and trust that their expert eyes will catch most of my mistakes. I love my critique group and wouldn't be able to function without them!
What is your favorite part of the revision process? Does any of it frighten you? (I was petrified to read my WIP through for the first time.) Do you have a critique group that helps improves your work?