This month's question: When do you know your story is ready?
Definitely not December 1st--the day after NaNo. Let the rough draft breathe and then dive into editing, oh, say for the next six months or so. When do I think my story is ready? I'm glad you asked. When I type THE END and start talking to myself with phrases like the following: this is it, I can relax now, time for a break, then I'm certain it's not ready. Pull back. Retreat! Get those editing goggles back on. Grab those CPs and beta readers for another walk through.
Whenever you are positive your story is ready, trust me, it's not. Those tiny plot holes will haunt you in your sleep, keeping you awake until you fix them. Just like with construction projects, always add another month or two or three before declaring your story complete. Then you might be ready. Unfortunately, I've learned this the hard way.
To the editing cave! But remember to fill this cup first.
P.S. Feeling pretty good this month after my ghostly middle-grade mystery placed third in the AUTHORS.me diversity writing contest. My MC is a boy in a back brace, but I can't tell you how he got that way or what happens because it's an integral part of the story. Cue the happy dance!
Do you disappear into a hideout, aka the Batcave, when writing? Any good news this past month? Working on a new story? Gearing up for NaNo?