Quote Originally Posted by bwthomason View Post
I have a couple of questions:
1.) Any advice on self editing? I want to put the best product in front of whoever reads it, but with the exception of the critiques of the other member of my two man book club, I am left to self edit.
Another way to learn to edit and critique your own work is to critique someone else's. This gives you the distance from the work to be objective and allows you to see work in development, rather than published work which has already been through the editing process.

There are several online critique groups. My personal recommendation would be Critters which is well run, produces good critique, is focused on being positive and diplomatic, and is free. They also have a mechanism for getting feedback for longer work, such as novel length pieces, called a Request for Dedicated Readers (RFDR) which most sites can't deal with.

It is a truth that it is easier to see someone else's mistakes than your own, but you will find yourself pointing something out to someone and then thinking, "Hang on, I do that." It's a great way to learn and it doesn't require a physical meeting or venue, which can sometimes be difficult to organise and can fit around shift patterns or other commitments. You do have to set a reasonable amount of time every week to do it, though. An hour or two should be fine for most weeks.

Another way to edit is to work through the paragraphs backwards. This prevents you being caught up in the narrative flow and forces you to consider each paragraph as a stand-alone fragment of story. It can help you to tighten your style and pick up things you would otherwise miss, but it won't help with the character or story logic issues that KatG was mentioning.

Quote Originally Posted by bwthomason View Post
2.) How much harder is it going to be to get published for someone whose writing is geared more to fantasy noir than mainstream?
Dark and Urban Fantasy are very popular right now, but you do need to bring something new and fresh to differentiate your work. That can be in your writing, your style, a twist of character or plot or by writing an original character or setting. Preferably all of the above.