I haven’t posted anything here for a while. What’s been happening?
How’s the book going? Well, I’ll tell you, right after I show you:
436 pages, nearly 106,000 words. All of them need to be edited.
Well, I can’t officially say that, as the draft is still getting overhauled, but I’m coming up for air for a moment to say that yes, the second draft is about an hour away from being finished. This means it’s on to Draft Three from there.
Yes, that’s UP from 101,000 words the first time out. I wrote an entirely new chapter and expanded on some other ones, to punch up the action or to add clarity to what had been happening, etc. After this draft is done, it has to be printed for hard copy review (and red-penning to death) which will take nearly a ream of paper, as noted above.
It’s still not time to declare myself an author or query agents. FYI.
I will close by saying that I really, really, like these characters. I was editing an earlier chapter and the characters felt like a comfortable pair of shoes, or broken-in jeans. I read the words on the page and they just felt right. In need of editing, sure, but the essence, man, the essence! It felt bittersweet to reach the end once more. I can’t wait to experience them again in book two. Gotta get this one done, first.
Many years ago (1990-1994) I worked for Panasonic. Toward the middle of that run, three area warehouses converged into one super-sized Distribution Center. For the vast majority of my time with the company, there was a 50-50 mix of permanent employees (such as myself) and temps (we didn’t call them contractors, as is fashionable now). The most influential of the bunch was a highly educated guy named Glenn.
I finished my nightly writing session a few minutes ago (as I type this – the blog posting is on a time delay) and wanted to take a moment to breathe before going back under on Thursday night.
I have been typing away, not at all following the ancient and accepted guidelines for formatting a fiction novel manuscript. That part will come much later. I am still focused on writing the bare bones of the story. As told time and time again, I write fluidly, which is to say, I make up the story as I go. I have a rough idea of the ending but due to the magic of characters coming to life (in print), it’s been thrilling to see where they go and what they do when they get there.
Now, being that focused (I’m insane, I tell ya), I have been uncharacteristically reticent to look ahead to the publishing phase. I know that there is no guarantee that this or any other book I write will hit the big time, but still, if I want to take a crack at it, I need to know how the game is played. Step One is, write the damn book.
After checking out the general formatting guidelines, I made a copy of my ongoing draft and formatted “quick and dirty”. Here’s how it looks in blur-o-vision:
It was a very hectic work day on Monday and there was barely time for any sort of art-related shenanigans except strictly for breaks and lunch. Sad trombone! But that’s okay, the day job is important. I fit in the art stuff when and where I can, both home and away. Today features a little of each.
Continuing with yesterday’s theme, I did the “the item closest to you is your subject, now sketch” thing and kept at it, turning the pencil sharpener at different angles to get used to approaching the same item from different angles.
I got in at the usual time at the office this morning and I spread out my “coloring studio”, and the look of it amused me. I tell people I’m a professional artist with an office job hobby.
Spoiler alert: 2 of the above pages are finished and will appear here on Monday.
Also: I wrote my daily Monday-Friday posts the night before they go “live”. Lest anyone think I am blogging at work. I have enough on my plate between Work and “work”.