My second revision letter arrived in the mail today--a bulging UPS package knotted with a rubber band. Once again, I must comb through line edits on the manuscript itself (in royal blue pencil, the sort I'd use in art class to shade a portrait of the Atlantic). Julie's typewritten letter is three pages long (instead of the four single-spaced pages I received in December). This time my editor seems more concerned with nailing literary themes and making sure the dramatic arc is tightened. I'll have to trim down my new chapters, which should only streamline it.
When I first read the letter, I could barely see the words. "What exactly do they want?" I kept asking. After letting it sit (and drowning myself in coffee) I feel like I can handle it. Maybe.
The weirdest part is working with someone so far away...like the man behind the curtain in the Wizard of Oz.
In more hopeful news, I received an Artist Enhancement Grant from the state of Florida. I'll spend the money on a flight to Prague this summer to research my second novel. Of course, there's no guarantee that my publisher will buy it. But I've been dreaming of traveling back there for so long, it feels like anything is possible...