Friday, May 24, 2019
So what's the significance of June 30?
For those of you who are interested, June 30 is the date by which I plan to submit my novel to several publishers. Did I just type that? I can't believe it. It's been a long, long journey.
I can't think of anything I've wanted to be more than a writer. I remember writing a short story with a babysitter when I was a kid. It was a western (don't ask me why I chose that genre, because I have no interest in it today), and I wish I still had that story. That was a lot of years ago (I'll be sixty this October). And, while I wrote a first novel in my early twenties––coming home after work, eating dinner, cleaning up, then writing longhand in scribblers at least until bedtime and often beyond that, for nine solid months––it was a piece of crap and will never see the light of day. But…it taught me something important. It taught me I could write a novel, start to finish. It taught me I had what it took to stick with something and see it through to completion. And it gave me the energy to keep going this time around.
Some of the notes I've kept around writing my current novel have 2010 written on them. That's when I started to figure out what I wanted to write about. But I didn't really start it in earnest until 2012. That's still a hell of a long time––an average of four or five hours a day, Monday to Friday, with short breaks in between, for nearly seven years. SEVEN YEARS. Did I think I could do this? No. I wasn't sure. Am I glad I did? You can't imagine how much.
Thirty-six chapters, 393 pages, 96,747 words––my novel is almost done, and I couldn't be more thrilled. Truly a lifelong dream come true. The query letter is written. The synopsis is written. And now, I'm polishing to make sure my manuscript shines: validating setting details, cutting throwaway words (for example, very, also, rather, really, quite, etc.), and addressing the last issues I've documented on literally thousands and thousands of note sheets since starting this process. I have never worked this hard on anything or felt more fulfilled by something I've done. I've given birth to a book, and I'm closer to it than I am to most human beings.
As always, I'm still available if there's anything in my blog you're interested in and want to ask me about. Or if you just want to talk about something in your life, something you're going through. Simply send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will respond. I'd love to hear from you.