Keeping a character consistent during the novel-writing process is a challenge, right? Especially if you take ten months on that first draft like I did. My MC changed in my mind throughout the year, as did my moods, and my inspirations. I had to be careful during revisions to make sure I kept my characters each true to themselves.
I think even if it's not intentional, what you're currently reading helps shape what you're writing. You get influenced by character traits, dialogue, themes, etc. I'm not saying it's a bad thing. Just reminding you not to get offended when your critique partners or betas say, "THIS CHARACTER WOULD NEVER SAY THIS!"
Which brings us to critique partners. They're miracle workers. They have the ability to spot redundancies and stupid phrasing and to tell you you're using laying when it should be lying. They're the ones that pester you every day asking for another chapter ("What do you mean, you don't have anything else written yet? SNAP TO IT!" I owe these ladies my sanity. My story wouldn't be the same without them.
And betas. OH LOVELY BETAS! (The ones that had nothing to do with your writing process and read the whole story when it's "finished") For taking the time to read all forty-one chapters of my little contemporary YA story and loving it to pieces, I will be forever grateful. Your suggestions (and the catching of my inconsistencies!) were taken to heart, and it's because of you my story is that much shinier.
Cupcakes and sparkles to my home team: Kristi, KM, Amy, and Cari.
Do you have an amazing team of critique partners and betas helping you out? How much do you love them?!