Song of the Sapien is currently just under 68,000 words (about 250 pages). I’m in the middle of writing chapter 22. There should be about 26 chapters I think, and the rest are already mapped out. Part of me wishes I could run away for a few days and just hammer the rest out without interruptions. It is so close I can taste it. I can see those delicious words “THE END” in my mind and I am salivating.
Of course, I can’t run away. I have to work my writing into my daily schedule. And yet on a day like today when I have had some time, I haven’t written anything. I blame the kids needing my attention, or having to do other things, but truth is, I could have made time. I am avoiding it. Why? Why avoid doing something I’m excited about?
One of my avoidance techniques today has been reading. I’m reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. And I think I found my answer on pg 87.
Hard as this endeavor of mine is, this is an “easier” point in my career. I am mere chapters away from finishing my first first draft. The end is in sight. It will be so exciting to hit that goal.
But once I do, the easy part is over. Once I type “The End” the really hard work begins. I have to go back and rewrite the first half because I changed endings half way through and the draft won’t be coherent without key changes made to the beginning. Then I need to get feedback from beta readers. Then I need take all their critiques, and revise the whole manuscript again. And again. I might wind up having to change key plots points and the voice or the tense at some point. I will have to face the reality that all the work I’ve been doing thus far, while it might not be bad, it isn’t going to be good enough. I know that. That’s part of writing. It’s a daunting, nerve-wracking, unavoidable part of the process.
But I can’t stay on the verge forever.
So deep breaths, then full steam ahead. Or half steam. Or any steam at all, Just as long as I’m moving ahead. It isn’t a race. After all, the next thing Liesel realizes on pg 87?
“This would still take time.”