Today may seem like any other last-day-of-the-month, but it was a very special last-day-of-the-month for me. January is finally over, which is a very good thing health-wise in any given year, because it means the warm weather is coming to ease my arthritis. Also, this year did not have an auspicious start, and nearly everyone in my family is grateful that the year is now 1/12 finished; although I keep reminding myself of the wise words a friend gave me...if the year starts out lousy, it means there's nowhere to go but up!
The other thing that set today apart is the manuscripts for Deadly Gamble were due back from the beta-readers today. I sent out thirteen manuscripts. One was sent as an experiment in working with OpenOffice; and I really didn't expect it would be sent back with the others, since the person who is helping me with that experiment is a Mom with two children and two jobs...who is also going to school.
Of the twelve I actually expected back by the deadline, four of the readers are professional colleagues of Anne's, and eight are letterboxing friends of Marie's. One email address was miscommunicated, and that recipient didn't get their copy. (Sorry about that!)
(Are you doing the math? You realize I'm down to eleven people, right?)
From eleven "viable" copies, six were edited and sent back on time. a seventh was sent back without editing, as there were technical difficulties. (Her computer had problems with track changes.) Four have not yet come back. I've read the comments that have come in the emails, and the book seems to have gone over fairly well, especially considering that it is still very much a work in progress. Two of the readers suggested the same change, which will have to be very carefully examined. I haven't yet looked at any of the changes or comments that were actually made inside the manuscript, but I look forward to sitting down with Anne and digging into the meat of the matter in the next few days.
I do have to free her from the influence of the characters from another book who are currently chasing around in her brain, though, before we can really get down to work on Deadly Gamble...but we will be doing that very soon, because we hope to have it ready for publication by late April / early May...if the editing goes well and my finals don't get in the way of eBook formatting.