So, the novel was written. Actually, calling it a 'novel' is not quite the truth per se. Coming in at twenty thousand words, it was more of a lengthy short story; a novella, really. But still, not bad for three days.
My next step, after a few months of ignoring the damn thing, was to get a second opinion.
I decided to not show the manuscript to anyone I knew (my ego could not take such a mauling). I thereby took advantage of the Writer-in-Residence program at the Winnipeg Public Library. I submitted my first twenty pages, and waited. And waited. And then forgot all about it.
Finally, I received a phone call from the writer, asking if I could come in to discuss the work. While I was hesitant - who needs criticism, anyway - the meeting went far better than I hoped. At the conclusion, she offered to read the rest of the manuscript as well, which I took as a solid sign that there might be something to all this.
After a few more weeks, the writer let me know that she thought I could build upon what I already had, offering a few suggestions for improvement, but leaving the majority of changes up to me. I thanked her very much for the praise, and extracted a promise from her to read the manuscript again once I had given it a thorough going-over.
So far, so good. A writer I was familiar with had given me a much-needed boost. I immediately (well, in the next month or so) began rewriting the beast.
But who was the author? Well, that I shall leave for the mext installment, but if there's anyone actually reading this thing, I shall provide a hint here.