Thursday, February 2, 2012

The End of Pirates and Pickles

First I said I'd finish my book by the end of the summer. Then by Halloween. Then by the end of the year. Then by the end of January. Okay, so my goal was...modified several times. Anyway, I finally finished my book yesterday.

Yesterday morning, Jummers was whining about how he wanted to do something FUN. And since I only exist so that my children can have FUN, I made him a deal. "If you let Mommy finish her book, we can go get something yummy at the bakery."

I had a few small scenes left so I thought it was completely reasonable. I don't get much writing done with my kids awake, but I. was. so. close. And Jummers was agreeable. However, his little sister was not. And really, those last few scenes took much longer than I thought they would...so on the very cusp of finishing we went and "celebrated" early because my son's patience was wearing very thin and Little had permanently hung herself on my arm.

So when Jummers had a football cupcake and about 200 grams of sugar inside of him and during Little's nap, I finished in the afternoon, and even though my book still needs a lot of work...I'm proud of it. This first draft is much better than my first book's first draft. It was more planned and plotted and therefore is more cohesive, yet it felt very spontaneous. I never really knew for sure what my main character would say (who has had a name change from Bonnie to Annie by the way...long story). And I like her.

So a couple weeks off then I'm going to edit this beast before I send it to my betas. My first book needed a completely-from-scratch rewrite, and this book does not. Which is a relief. A don't-look-back-at-your-first-draft-because-it's-too-awful-while-rewriting is a daunting task.

Now, I was thinking I've never really set out to edit my own book. I've edited other's books, I've done continual editing of pieces of my work, but not my own book in one whole chunk. I have some ideas how I'm going to proceed, but I'd love to know your editing methods:)

7 comments:

  1. CONGRATS!!! That is a HUGE thing - finishing the draft! As one of my advisors likes to say, "Writers love revising because there's nothing they like better than a page that isn't blank." :)

    I echo Patti, too. Do a run-through for big things like plot and such. Then go back and do the smaller things.

    Of course, I've been revising for over a year and I just today went back and redid my first chapter, which changes everything, so you may not want to talk to me about it. :)

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    1. It's true. I like my pages full instead of empty. It's like having my fridge and pantry full after a big shopping trip...a shopping trip that took 11 months.

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  2. Yay! The best advice I've gotten was to print a copy of your book, spiral-bound. Then go through with highlighters and mark what you love with one color and what is plot-important in another. Don't make any other notes than that. Try to read it all the way through before editing anything.
    Then when you are done, you'll have a visual guide for the rest of the edits, knowing where you need to work.

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    1. My book spiral bound, a highlighter...and a big mug of cocoa. Sounds like heaven to me.

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  3. So big to little. I'm not sure how long the editing process will take me, but I hope not too long.

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  4. Congratulations! It is always such a good feeling to finish something. Bask in it for a bit, then open up that document and go for it!

    Read it once through and do NOTHING to it...just make notes on a legal pad or something. Then start to plan your revision. And I agree...big to small. Plot holes and pacing first, then the rest.

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  5. Congrats!!! So awesome! Great editing suggestions from the other ladies - I may have to borrow those. :)

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