Two days ago, I celebrated twice. Friday was both my wedding anniversary and the day I finished the first draft of my untitled sequel to The Brevity of Roses. We celebrated the first occasion with a movie (not good) and a dinner (excellent). I celebrated the second with a huge sigh of relief because I took so dagnabit long to write that draft.
Yesterday morning, I went to my computer to check email, blogs, Facebook, etc., and then that weird afterglow hit me. Yay, I finished the book! Darn, I have nothing to write today.
Instead, I did laundry and made liquid hand soap. Then I started clearing the clutter I’d let collect around me for months. Today, I’ll continue working around the house to keep my mind off the lost feeling that comes from not writing. All the while, I’ll try to avoid conscious thought about the book.
In a few days, I’ll sit back down and open that file again. I’ll start at the beginning, reading one chapter at a time. This will be a light edit—first I’ll deal with the comments I left myself during writing. Then, I’ll fix typos and punctuation errors, clarify meaning, and correct any inconsistencies that no doubt occurred because I worked on this a full year, and it’s risky to rely on my memory.
The next step will be to send it to my alpha reader, who is an excellent writer and strong in the areas I’m not. After I get my alpha’s notes, I’ll revise and follow that with a deeper edit. Then, I’ll put my little baby in the hands of a few beta readers. (If you volunteered, please remind me.)
I’ll have much more work to do in the coming weeks, but I’m trying hard not to get stressed about that. I’ve done all this before, so I know I’m capable. I’d like to work on the cover in my breaks from editing, but I need a title first. I might already have one. Might. Just in case not—I’m still listening, Muse.
Well, that’s the state of my writing affairs. May whatever state you’re in be a great one.
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23 thoughts on “That Weird Afterglow”
Congratulations on both amazing accomplishments. In the grand scheme of things, one year is not very long. It took me 3 years to write my first book. I know when it is all said and done, you will have another book to be proud of. Let it sit for as little or long as you think it needs. happy editing.
Thank you, Darlene. 🙂 When you say 3 years, was that just for the first draft? I think this one went faster because it’s a sequel, but I think I could have written that draft in about 4 months if I hadn’t been sick from November to May. Who knows how long it will take before it’s ready to publish. Not long, I hope, but I thought I was done with Brevity more than once before I actually was.
Linda, congrats, congrats!!!!!!! Sounds like you have a solid plan. 🙂
Thank you, Michelle. 🙂 Well … let’s just say I have a plan. 😉
Congratulations, Linda! Finishing a first draft is a fantastic feeling. Enjoy. 🙂
Thank you, Cathryn. You’ve experienced it so many more times than I have, you should be well acquainted with the feeling. 🙂
Congratulations! It’s like birthing a baby and then you face another twenty years of taking care of it, but it’s worth it.
Thank you, Mary Jean. Hmmm, I guess that means Brevity’s not even in pre-school yet. 😉