Dear Diary: Every time I take a vacation, I get an email telling me that an editor/agent does not like my protagonist. My husband tells me to stay away from the email while I'm away, but is that feasible nowadays. (I could have an email telling me something I need to know about family or friends).
Now I have rewritten Violet Hart to be nicer although maybe still not nice enough. She is who she is.
How is it that no one has ever told me that a protagonist in a short story is not nice enough but everyone who's read the novel (okay, five people now) says this about poor Violet? Does she need to be nice from page one? Isn't it possible that someone with her background might be unpleasant for the first half of the book. Believe me I'm not faulting the people who have read it. It's not you, it's me. Clearly.
I think my book falls between dark and light. Falls in the place where no one is quite satisfied with the poor woman or her story. And the story itself falls somewhere between literary (or middlebrow novel) and crime. My daughter says, write another novel. But this novel is the best I can do. Really.