The first thing I did was to read over the comments from my critique group - they are so wise! Then I looked over my story with fresh eyes. Very fresh. My last manuscript update was dated 2007.
It took me a while but I was able to immerse myself again and do some heavy revisions. There is still room for a little more but being primarily an illustrator I was anxious to get on with pacing the story. I made a grid for the page spreads on a large sheet of graph paper then I wrote each character's dialog on color coded sticky notes so I could move them around to establish the page breaks and turns.
Once I was fairly happy with where the stickies were I moved them to a mock up (8 legal size sheets of paper folded in half). I moved the stickies to the mock up and then with real page turns, I shifted things around until I was satisfied.
The next thing I did was to sketch out my characters without looking at the previous versions. I didn't want to just copy my old approach. I've sketched out one scene so far to see if it is going to work:
For comparison here is the original version: (so glad I got rid of the hat in the revise)