I would have thought that after all these years I might have bought a clue along the way. So there's this word that agents use in their blogs when referring to a novel worthy of sending out on query: Polished. Now at first I thought that the word polished meant that my chapters shouldn't have any major issues or typos (I'm dyslexic, I thought the typos would be the hardest part. Ha! Wrong again). Then I thought polished meant a rewrite followed by a single edit. And then, because it's hard to be that stupid that long, I realized that maybe they meant polished like what you do to rocks and metals to make them shiny. Shiny? Huh, a shiny manuscript? Oh yeah, I've got some work to do. So, being the kind of proactive I like to be, I'm not sending out any new queries until I'm confident that my shiny manuscript will start knocking off some socks (because stealing all the socks in the world is one of the steps to ruling the world!).
And I'm glad I've done it. My beta readers are all pleased with the changes I've made. It makes me wonder if I didn't start editing while I was still in the honeymoon phase. Now that I've made changes, I have to go hunting for that ever elusive typoe (seen here in it's natural habitat). So it's back to the wild lands of editing for me. Now all I have to do is go over it another 200 times and I should have a shiny manuscript.
And to think, I used to worry that I might edit something to death (only one of many illusions shattered by actually trying to get an agent).