Well, if you made any friends on the forums over the month, you have a headstart on possible critique partners. There’s also a number of us here, too 🙂
You’re Done With NaNoWriMo, Now What?
1. Finish the novel if you haven’t already. I know for myself, 50,000 words only got me 75% through my outline. I still have 8 plot points, 14,000 words, until I’m done with a first draft.
2. Edit, polish, edit some more. Depending on the genre, 50,000 words isn’t enough for a full manuscript. Or you find that half the words you wrote need to be ripped out and written again. Get a polished draft (second, third, fourth).
3. Send it out for critiques. Critique partners are a great way to see your novel from a reader’s perspective. And they can help highlight areas to work on. Keep working with your critique partners / group until your manuscript has been deemed ready. Have then critique your query letter as well. That’s your first introduction to an agent or publisher.
4. Start querying! When you’ve got a polished, final draft that’s been looked over by others and is ready to fly, let it. Make a list of agents or publishers you want to query and then start sending out in batches (5-10).
5. And then the waiting process begins. Wait, wait some more, keep on waiting. If your first batch of queries gets rejected, revise your query letter and start anew. With hope, your manuscript will catch an agent’s eye. Be prepared, though, it might take a while.