Every author needs an editor. Failing that, every author needs beta readers. The hardest part of the editing phase of producing a book is waiting for the editor/beta reader to finish his or her task. I’ve not succeeded in that with past books, but am determined that I will with this one.

Jumping back into the manuscript while someone else is editing it can be helpful, if only because it allows the writer and editor to interact. However, I think the doing so interferes with the editor’s work, because interruption rarely makes for good work.

Right now, Russian Dawn is in the tender care of beta readers whose volunteer assistance I deeply appreciate. After they’ve gone through the manuscript, I’ll revise as I deem appropriate. If I still feel uncomfortable with releasing the book into the wide world, I’ll put the manuscript into the hands of a professional editor.

Yes, I am a professional editor, but it’s folly to edit one’s own work.

I’ve gotten a start on book promotion, too. The Facebook marketing guy I hired for my end-of-year catalog promotion will be creating the Facebook ad for Russian Dawn. I am looking into Amazon’s book marketing options to determine ease of use and affordability. And I’ll be present at the 2017 ConGlomeration in Louisville, KY, to promote Hen House Publishing and Red Sun Magazine. The event runs April 7 – 9.

Once Russian Dawn is released, I will combine the three books–Russian Lullaby, Russian Gold, and Russian Dawn–into a single volume for print. None of the three books, really, is long enough for print, but together they’ll offer about 150,000 words of pure romance. Not too shabby.

Meanwhile, I’m hanging from tenterhooks as I resist the temptation to open the manuscript, see what the beta readers are doing, and then plunging into the revision process. Patience, I remind myself, is a virtue. Besides, I tell myself, I have a couple dozen other manuscripts that could use some attention.

Finishing the draft manuscript affects me predictably. I have finished writing, my brain thinks, and therefore it’s now time to read. And watch TV. And read some more. In short, my creative energy isn’t even simmering right now. It’s been shoved to the back burner where it waits, tepid and stagnant until something sparks and the fire is once again lit. With the goals I set for myself this year, I cannot afford to dwell in the lull between manuscripts for long.