I come bearing something other than June Favorites today, I’m afraid! I hope to be able to put that list together for Thursday… next week Tuesday, at the latest.
It’s taken me two years to get to this particular writing update: I’ve wrapped it up.
I finished the novel yesterday. I’m happy with it, so it’s done. It’s so done, I had the printed manuscript spiral-bound, because hell if I’m going to deal with putting hundreds of pieces of paper back together in the right order in the event of mishap.
I ended up with 38 chapters and 455 pages, 461 if you include the section break and other such non-text pages.
(I’m not planning to mail this behemoth hard-copy anywhere, by the way. This is just for my own purposes.)
How long it took: Out of curiosity, I went through my past agendas and files and found that Day 1 of the actual writing was July 7, 2016. It took just about two years (minus five days) to complete. I quit my job on March 18 and from there spent three months and one week in prep-mode, so in total, it took 2 years and 3.5 months.
How it went down: It turned out that Draft One was actually Draft Zero. It was that rough, in my opinion. By the end of my first run-through, I’d realized that I’d been working on a first draft, not a second draft.
Of course, I then went back and did a second run-through (“third draft”). And in the last week, I ran through it again, quickly, a third time over the rough draft, just to place chapter breaks where they needed to be (things got pushed around during the editing/re-writing/cleaning-up).
In my scan-through of the text that last time I still caught a couple of minor editing errors (two, exactly) and a few inconsistencies. That last round was really a polishing round, and I’m so glad that I took the time to do it.
Inconsistencies were a big concern throughout, mainly technical details such as capitalizing certain terms when used the same way throughout the work.
Take-away: The “find” function has been invaluable. Have I said that before? Probably.
After two years of hammering away at this thing, it feels strange to not have to work on the writing part of it!
What’s next: From now, I’m focusing on writing an abstract, cover letters, etc. as I prepare to release it out into the wilds. Maybe someone will want it, right?
Once it’s out there and I’m in wait-mode, I’m going to start prep for my next project.
This first-novel endeavor has been a priceless learning process. Thanks to you all again for hanging with me on this journey.