The End, The Beginning, and a Bunch of Numbers

Two years,

three research trips,

eight critiques,

twenty two sources,

hundreds of websites,

73,434 words,

and the first draft of my new novel is complete.

(I know, priceless.)

It’s amusing, though–that word “complete.”  It’s amusing to type “The End.”  Writers know it’s only the beginning.  I’m no mathematician, but I do know if the writing process can be measured in percentages, I’m only about 20% of the way there–maybe.

So now what?

1. Give myself until tomorrow morning to bask in “The End,” then start an immediate read-through, noting all the places that need expansion/contraction.

2. Put it on the shelf for about a month to let it simmer, and so I may emotionally disconnect from what I’ve written.

3. Roll up my sleeves and begin the revision process.

4. Months (??) after that, print copies for my first round of readers.

5. Secure permissions for historical references, quotes, and photos I want to use in the book.

6. Compile complete list of references for bibliography.

7. Revise based on the feedback of my readers.

8. Hire a professional editor (hopefully, one at a publisher I have for my first novel. :))

9. Revise, again.

10. Print out copies for some of my “test” book clubs.  (Get their feedback.)

11. Revise, again.

12. “The End

**Please note: Emotional breakdowns, questioning of career choices and abilities, and wine (and juicebox) parties for the people who live with me and hear about the book all the time are not noted but are integral to the process.**


9 thoughts on “The End, The Beginning, and a Bunch of Numbers

  1. joyisachoice says:

    I just find you such an incredible inspiration….yay you!! I can hardly believe the work you put into your books. BTW, I cannot WAIT to talk with you about RMF, but Kindle says I’m only 70% through. Perhaps I’ll catch you in your ‘month of rest’ 😉

  2. Kelly says:

    Congratulations friend. And I shall be with you through the next several “ends”!

  3. Erika Robuck says:

    Thank you, both, for your support and encouragement. Writer grrrl’s must stick together.

  4. Heather J. says:

    Congratulations on getting to this point – it must feel SO good. 🙂

  5. sarahwedgbrow says:

    Brilliant! You’ve done what a lot of aspiring writers are dreaming about…finishing their first draft. Yeah, there’s bunches to do still, but bask in the glory that you’re a first draft goddess!

  6. Mars Dorian says:

    Congrats !
    I really like the style of your blog, it’s dreamy and melancholic – a strange feeling !

  7. Kristan says:

    Here via WU, and WOW CONGRATS! You may have already started revisions at this point, but seeing that big fat “The End” on your screen… I can’t even imagine. I mean, I’ve done it once or twice, but… okay now I’m getting shivers remembering the feeling, and looking forward to it in the new few weeks again. 😀

    (PS: I heart Sarah Wedgbrow!)

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