I've been working on a revision of my novel for the last few weeks. I heard from an agent I'm incredibly excited about working with, and she suggested some changes, hence the revision effort.
She didn't write much on my manuscript, but what she did write was exactly what I needed to hear. She wrote that the issue seems to be that readers see what my characters are thinking, but not necessarily what they're feeling. And I understand exactly what she means by that. It was a perfect one-line (fourteen words!) summation of what is missing in the 90,000 word novel.
So what's happening now is that I am going through those 90,000 words word by word and making significant changes. For some reason, although this has been a difficult thing to do, I've really been enjoying it. I guess it's because the book is getting so much better. Sometimes a change of one word changes the sound of the whole paragraph. In other places, entire scenes are changing and new characters are being introduced.
I figure this one line suggestion will take me approximately six weeks to work into my manuscript.
So, as you work through your own papers, remember that revision is something we all do. It is intensive. But it also should be exciting and fulfilling.
I know it's a little early to be talking about revision since we're only in week one, but happy writing and happy revising!