There is a Chinese proverb…

“Be not afraid of growing slowly; be afraid only of standing still.”

So slowly I go. Word count down to 179k (from 200k+). Simplifying, clarifying. Altering archs, modifying premise, tweaking plot. All sorts of change. This effort will be the final swipe at this story. When it goes back up online, it will live in that form forever. A first novel is a first novel and I’m willing to let it be that, after I do this final round of revision. The lessons learned from it are substantial and I will move forward to the next one with them in mind.