Plenty of people have started my book, but until recently no one had finished it. Many people offered their services, but most people are busy: they have lives and jobs and houseplants, and critically reading a book is much different than reading it for enjoyment. Luckily, someone I know had the time to read my book, for a decently modest fee. During a nice summer evening, we floated on a boat drinking beer and discussing the particulars of what my book needed.
The fact is, for any novel, you need someone who has gone from start to finish. Yes, an editor will do that, but I mean earlier in the process, when you don’t have a book you are ready for an editor to see. You have questions about your story that need to be answered. Does this work? Does that make sense? Did you get the right response to this event? Did you realize what I needed you to realize at the right time?
Getting someone you know, who you can trust to give you good advice, is invaluable. If you can get someone to do it for free or for fun, great, but it is certainly worth the money if you need to hire someone.
And now, with a number of important questions answered, I’m better prepared to finish my book.