Writing is not a race, it’s a marathon; completing a project: short story, novella, full length novel; all are great accomplishments and it is so satisfying to write the last line of a WIP and type ‘The End’.
The End, however is only the beginning. It’s the time you, the writer, must go back to the very beginning of the book (or other project) and edit, polish, revise whatever is required to make the book the very best it can be. A first draft will rarely cut it, though some writers manage to pull that off.
Once the book is as polished as possible, there are many other things to consider. Is the book ready for the eyes of a reader? If so, then who should read it? We don’t all have critique partners and most of the time family doesn’t qualify as critiquers. Beta readers? They can be helpful in providing an opinion, but are they professional enough to let their subjective views sway you into making changes you may not be comfortable with? Tough questions and one size does not fit all.
The options are many and include having the book professionally edited for a price that can be well worth it; entering contests for feedback from professionals; vying for a spot in the many mentoring programs that have become popular. Or simply starting the querying process and approaching agents and/or publishers with your newborn book!