The Edge of No Return

Hello readers,

I have reached the edge of no return.

Beyond this line is a factory which contains a mold cutout of my book. Once I place this stack of papers into the mold, the machine will begin assembling my idea into a physical, tangible paperback novel.

As I stand on this painted double line which warns: DO NOT CROSS before its boundary, I glance at the papers in my hands. The text has been underlined, crossed out, and circled in red ink. Notes exist in the negative space between the margins. They contain jokes and commentary I have saved for my editor.

The papers weigh down my ink stained, papercut hands. For three years I carried this project from idea to novel. Though I want to place these pages within the machine, I hesitate. I worry about what I may have overlooked and the mistakes still present in the manuscript. Is Cindy too unlikeable? Two beta readers tell me, yes, they do not like her and do not want to read about her. Everyone else? They understand she’s a broken woman and have been resoundingly positive.

I wouldn’t be likeable either if I was responsible for causing someone to burn to death.

Still the two no’s bug me and not because I want to please everyone. The two no’s are irksome because the readers were technically in my target demographic. Readers who enjoy fleshed out female protagonists, futuristic technology, and a bit of superhero action, should find this novel in their wheelhouse. So it was unfortunate and baffling that the two readers who claimed to be fans of the genre, did not like it at all.

On Wattpad, the beta of A Bitter Winter has seen a modicum of success, but the amount of readers continuing to later chapters is dwindling into the single digits. Without direct feedback, your guess is as good as mine as to why.

So I stand there wondering if I should take these stacked sheets of paper back to my desk. If I should light the candle, dip the quill, and make more corrections over three years of dry, faded ink.

All writers who want to become published authors must face this question.

Have I done enough work to tell a good story?

Did I do enough to convey that this novel is more than a mindless action book?

In the end, the readers who told me they loved the story are the ones I am writing for. My first published book was disastrous in terms of plot, prose, and characterization. And yet there were still those who wrote to me and told me they loved those books.

Though I still need to do a few more tweaks and changes to this pile of trees, come late February I shall place this manuscript into the machine. It will churn and hiss and puff until it spits out a fresh new novel waiting to be read.

The Silver Ninja: A Bitter Winter is set for a Q2 release date. Hope to see you then!

Wilmar Luna

Wilmar Luna

Couldn't be a superhero in real life so he decided to write his own. When he's not creating empowered female characters he can be found watching films, reading books, and playing lots of video games. Buy his books here: