Not Quite An Update, More Like a Chronicle of Recent History

Ready, set, publish!

Ready, set, publish!

It has been, like, centuries since I’ve written a blog post. I’d thought about it. Many times. I even went so far as to come up with a witty title for a new post. And yet, I didn’t get far enough to reach the website.

It’s an odd sensation to be at a loss for words. As a teenager, putting all my thoughts into words was about all I concerned my day with. That incessant need to express myself with blog posts (back in their heyday, before everyone had a blog), or in my Notebook of Doomed Things. For a time, all I wanted to do was express my innermost thoughts and tribulations, regardless if anyone else would ever read them.

And then I became an adult. And I still wanted to express myself. So I became a writer.

Fast-forward to last year, and I can say without a pause in my breath that 2014 was one for the books (ba-dum ching). I spent most of my “free” time on my book, whether it be writing, or editing, or designing the cover, or thinking about writing or editing or design. All of my brain space has been consumed by my manuscript, for better or for worse (although, I’ve sadly neglected a few friends; thankfully Husband is in charge of the cats, because … um …). Needless to say, despite how my original intent was to document my Adventures in Book Making, I have failed that resolutionmiserably. Also, my resolution to get back to the gym — but, one thing at a time.

Biggest update? Well, I can say THE THING IS DONE! Now, what’s next?

Something interesting happened between me an my editor (she’s awesome, by the way, and I’d totally recommend her): other than an hour-long conversation about some plot suggestions she had, she pretty much told me my manuscript was near perfect. I’ll reiterate: she told me my manuscript was the most incredible she’d read all year. That was in December, so she’d literally had eleven months of manuscripts to compare it to. Sure, the pile could have been lacking in quality, and sure, she could have only read a handful. Point is, I’m over here, having finished one first draft of one other novel, no English or Literature education past AP classes in high school, no writerly friends in my direct group of associates (aside from my dad, whose education was in the ancient times). And yet, she YELLED IN ALL CAPS that I needed to find myself a literary agent.

Which I did not do. I’ll get to that later.

I’m not boasting here (okay, just a smidgen). My point is to say this: I have torn my manuscript to pieces and put it back together so many times I hardly recognize it from the original draft. Really, I’d guesstimate that the final draft has no more than 60% of the original book that I wrote a year ago. What I first though was the story ended up being something else entirely, mainly because I allowed myself to believe that I was a shitty writer. This sentence is grammar vomit, that paragraph would make toddlers cringe, the whole entire chapter is absolute nonsense … Don’t get me wrong, some of it was good. But I knew if I bust out singing Everything is Awesoooome too early in the game, readers would shrug with a half-hearted “meh” and use the book as a chair leveler. So I tore it to pieces. And, thankfully it paid off. I handed my manuscript to my editor in a mostly-completed piece, she loved it, and here we are:

Moments away from publication. Finally.

Self-pubbing, that is.

Still? Really? After all this, you’re going to throw away a perfectly good opportunity to be a real-life published author? Yes. Why? That’s an answer for another post. But I will say, the book will be heading to your virtual bookshelves soon, as soon as I can sort out all the ebook conversion nonsense …

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