So here we are, at the end of my little experiment. 🙂
My title today comes from a movie about pirates, because I love pirates and the inherent hope in sailing towards something you can’t quite see. That makes my romantic version of piracy a suitable metaphor for this blog and the novel that goes with it…after all, there were many other ways I could have spent this month, and a myriad of excuses that would have absolved me of my guilt if I had decided to give up along the way. But this project breaks the cycle: this novel was a leap of faith in the face of my entire life history of looking for newer and shinier things. No matter what comes next, that will always be awesome.
However, as it is the final day of the month, now is the time to acknowledge where I stand and what comes next. As soon as this novel is done, I am going to give myself a little vacation as a reward. Even when I took breaks this month, they did not last long and the novel wasn’t far from my mind, so I think it might be good for me. Because my school semester will not have started yet, I can use the first week of August to breathe and enjoy other people’s stories for a change. I plan to go back to knitting and other computer-free hobbies that I used to enjoy, while watching TV shows not on a computer screen as much as possible.
After my break, I will come back to writing and editing, but hopefully in a less-laptop-obsessed way. I’ll be trying to achieve more of a balance for my own health and the happiness of my family. 🙂 My first priority will be passing my terribly-rough draft to my partner for an initial read-through. I don’t read as well on a screen, so he’ll flag whatever he sees for me to look at in my first revision. My second priority will be plotting and writing the prequel to my current draft, the first story in the series. I’m going to strive to fit that in around my other responsibilities because when November’s NaNoWriMo comes up I’d like to be able to write something completely different and already have my MirrorWorld stories progressing.
I do not intend to abandon this blog, as it is my first really successful one, in terms of continuous progress. I will be taking the first week in August off, though, because I won’t be working on my novel–and then when I return, I will be posting a bit less frequently. You can expect to see 3-4 posts here per week instead of one every day. They will deal with revision and constructive critique as well as the continual process of writing. You can also find more of my work at In Want of a Reader, the short story blog I contribute to, and I will be posting there more regularly once my first draft is done.
After my first giant revision is complete based on my own observations and my partner’s wonderful help, I’ll probably expand my early readership to the readers and writers who’ve asked/offered to do so. I think that after that second round of feedback, I could be ready to do what comes next–which for me is probably researching literary agents, query letters, and all of that.
Honestly, the only goal I cared about was writing a novel before I turned thirty. With focus, looking out for my health, and good time management, it’s possible I could actually have two or three written instead before that deadline arrives. But that would just be a bonus, because I faced my nonspecific fear and wrote a novel, so nothing will be harder than that for me. The fact that I feel like there’s potential buried deep in it is even more wonderful and unexpected.
I finished my first draft at exactly midnight. If I hadn’t stopped to look up a word, it would have been done at 11:59, but I’m okay with that. It was an important word. Now that my first draft is done, this blog will be re-branded to follow my journey beyond the first thirty days, as I muddle my way through whatever comes next. In case I forgot to mention it before, thank you so much for reading. 🙂 Having company as I went along meant the world to me.
Today’s word count: 3,862
Total word count: 76,492
Today’s excerpt: For most of her life, Elle had been a solitary practitioner. Other than family rituals, she had never joined her power with another witch’s magick, and it was incredible. She held on to that feeling, used it to bolster her energy after the attack, and braced for the next. They were strong enough to do this. She believed that with everything inside her, and she would fight until they made it happen.