With Book 1 in the hands of the publisher, I've been thinking about my audience. Some will like my book and some will not. Of those that don't some will simply tell me why they don't and others will pick it apart and offer a better way -- the way they would've done it.
I've seen that before. Back in college, I was involved in gaming. Friends of mine decided to host a gaming convention and needed adventures to run. I offered to write one, partially for the experience and partially because there was little elsewhere I wanted to do to help.
The adventure was for the Marvel RPG and I know it had issues. But one person who played it called my up on Friday night around 11 PM (or perhaps it was even later than that, I don't remember) and went through the list of things wrong and what to do about them.
I listened and thanked him only because it was the quickest way off the phone and back to sleep.
My novel will field people like that too. And to them I have little to say expect perhaps that I know my novel isn't perfect. But it is good, good enough to be published after years of struggle and strain. So if you can't say anything nice...
Also remember that the novel is the first one in a series. There is a lot of set up and introduction of characters because the series is a long one and a few short chapter introducing the main characters isn't so bad particularly since once I'm done with that, I don't look back. The adventure starts and you are on your way.
Book 2 and subsequent books are different. Almost no time is spent introducing the characters. The action starts almost immediately. But Book 1 is different and rightly so. If anyone disagrees, fine; you are entitled to your opinion, but don't tell me how to do it better. I'm the writer here. This is my ball and my backyard. If you don't like it, move on it.
That said, I'm hoping most people will like and enjoy the story and come back for the next book. So far, from the people who have read the earlier drafts, that seems to be the reaction, which is encouraging. Now I have to make Book 2 as good or better than Book 1. That's no small feat. Book 2 is over 100,000 words.
No wonder I'm so busy.