Friday, April 4, 2014

My Writing Life: The In Between Times

While finishing my book I was busy. Not regular busy, I was crazy-nose-to-the-keyboard-busy, writing and revising every free minute I had. For weeks my eyes were twitching and I had the craziest dreams. I wasn't even reading as much as usual. Finally my draft was ready and I sent it to two betas. I decided I'd take a break from that story. The plan was not to look at it for six weeks (this is the Stephen King advice). Hopefully when I pick my book up again, it will be with fresh eyes that can see the forest and the trees and all the plot points that need tweaking.

Actual trees

So I relaxed into the in-between life finally done writing and not yet editing. I tried to soak up the sense of pride at completing something. Surprisingly that worked for a few days. I watched Orphan Black and gave my dog a haircut. I had a list of books to read, some as research for my book. Tragically, despite how I tried to occupy my time I was left with too much of it. Maybe I was too adjusted to the hectic writing schedule or simply cannot handle being an inbetweener.* My mind itched to open the word document to start revising. I remembered things I need to clarify and I'm pretty sure I forgot to tie up one kind of important subplot. My betas are going to kill me. There was no way I'd make it six weeks without writing, so I pulled out an ongoing list of story ideas. I wrote a few lines summarizing what I would do with each one until I felt that tug and knew I'd found my next project.

Initially I thought starting a new book while another one is still in progress would be confusing. I was afraid I'd lose interest in my completed story and when the six weeks were up I'd ignore revisions in favor of writing the new book. Writing generally being more pleasant than revising which requires harsh self assessment. I suppose that could still happen, but I'm crossing my fingers that it doesn't. Possibly the new book will keep me optimistic when it's time to switch to editing mode or when I'm reviewing notes from betas asking, whatever happened to that pivotal character who is missing from the end of the book? Seriously, so sorry about that.

Disclaimer: Inbetweener is not a word. The Inbetweeners was a British sitcom about teenage boys. I have never been British or a teenage boy.

1 comment:

  1. The Inbetweeners was such a funny show!

    I'll admit, I couldn't do the whole six weeks thing. I lasted four weeks, before delving into revisions, but I read furiously to get my mind out of my story. So props to ya!