Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Racing Towards The Finish Line

I reached the 40K mark in my novel last night
by sheer grit and determination.
The more I try and hit these milestones the more
convinced I am that the whole book is crap.
I won't be doing this next November.

I may write another book.
I do have another one that I've carried
around in my head for nearly 10 years.
And a children's book for nearly that long, too.
But never again on such a short deadline.
It takes the enjoyment out of it.

I know now that a detailed outline works for me.
It doesn't detract from the actual writing of the book.
Too bad I only had that done for part of this book.
I'm making things up as I go now.
Dearest one gave me an idea last night
and that netted me several thousand words.
Then I remembered something I'd written on a scrap piece of paper,
a two word term,
and that gained me several thousand more.
I put a little sticky note over the word count calculator
so I can't obsess about every word as I type.
I only peeked every so often
and either groaned that I was 200 words further on
or felt quite pleased with myself when I'd added 2,000.
Okay, in all honesty, I never waited between peeks that long at all.
I pulled the sticky note away for night when I reached 40,044.

I have 5 days left to write the last 9,956 words.
I told dearest one last night that I would much rather be
editing the book right now than adding to the word count.
He said that at the rate I was going I could have the book done
in two more nights and then start editing.
I told him that once I'd reached the 50K mark
I was going to stick the book in a drawer
and forget about it for a while.

I've never been great at finishing things I start.
I love coming up with new ideas or projects.
I have unfinished cross stitch and crocheting projects
stuffed in drawers.
There are places in my home that are half organized
and half danger zone.
The cupboards have ingredients I thought would make a great new recipe
only to find that I still don't like curry.

How can you tell that not following through is one of my character defects?
So while I may continue to bitch and moan for the next 5 days
or until I reach 50K,
secretly (shhh, don't tell anyone)
I am pleased to be racing towards the finish line.
This story has been my companion for 25 years.
How strange to be writing a young adult novel
only to find myself growing up somewhat in the process.


Pru said...

The 40K stretch is hard, isn't it? But even though I'm avoiding and bitching and moaning myself, I think I might do this again next year. It's kind of encouraging to know I'm not alone in the race to 50K.

Black Pete said...

And it's Hope by a length, followed by Low Word Count coming up the backstretch, with WhattumIdoingthis4? and Keepatitbaby neck and neck near the guard rail. Keepatitbaby surges ahead, but here comes Low Word Count making its play. Ohhelljustedit has dropped out--looks like a fetlock injury here...

Anonymous said...

Half organized and half danger zone! LOL. I can soo relate!

Hope said...

BP - you made me laugh out loud.

Anonymous said...

BP, that's hilarious!

"I've never been great at finishing things I start."

Oh my, that's MY middle name!! No kidding, my older sister used to get so pissed off at me because I could only stand to do one verse (2 tops) of any song we'd be singing. Of course, I was the one who had control because she couldn't play piano or guitar. Ha

Hope, you can do this!! (I'm one of the people on the sidelines cheering you on and handing you some water or gatorade or whatever people hand to runners at marathons. ) Write. "Fix it in the mix", later as they say in the studio.