She told me that she had started reading it and said that the description had made her lose track of where she was. Happy times. Then I heard nothing from her.
The self doubt monster sat heavily on my shoulder and dug it's claws in. She hadn't finished it (I decided) that meant that the story wasn't engaging - the writing wasn't good if she'd stopped and hadn't wanted to pick it up again. My spirits plummeted and I found it hard to keep working on my next novel. Finally I asked my daughter to talk to her friend (I didn't want her to be uncomfortable admitting she hadn't enjoyed it) but I thought it would be helpful to know where she had got to in the novel before she stopped reading.
This morning her friend spoke to me. "I loved it" "The description was so good I thought I was actually there" "The minute I'd finished it I wanted to read it over again"
I was eleated.
I feel lighter - I've shrugged the monster off, for now - although he's probably lurking in the shadows somewhere; but in the meantime I must take this feeling and get on with my editting.