finishing


This morning one of my finished novels, the one that had some of the best writing and worldbuilding I’d done but was structurally flawed, starting talking to me, giving me new ideas and ways to fix the broken bits. Basically, after I finished this novel I realized that I’d tried to write a trilogy within the skin of a single novel (one of the curses of being an organic writer) and it would take a mountain of work to make things right. I’d slogged away at this thing for a year and a half and didn’t have the heart to do a massive restructure and start over, at least not at that juncture. So I shelved it and went on to another novel. I needed the break.

Well, today, as I said, that old novel started talking, doing a full court press, the new structure unfolding before me. It will still need more thinking, but I begin to see how to fix things. And, of course, it has absolutely nothing to do with the novel I am currently working on. But having finished six novels, I’m familiar with this syndrome. It is yet another elaborate attempt at sabotage by my subconscious—because the novel you’re not working on is always more attractive than the novel you are currently working on.

So, I took some notes and politely told the old novel to hold its peace. I would get to it in due time—but first I am going to finish what I’m currently working on. Like I said, I’ve been through this process enough to know that distractions are not my friend. Finish what’s on your plate before planning the next meal.

I actually take this as a positive sign. If the old habits of distraction are trying this hard, maybe it’s a sign that the Wonder Machine really is back online.

I’m so afraid to be hopeful because I’ve been disappointed so often in recent years. This time feels different from all the other abortive attempts, but who the hell knows?

I should probably stop talking about it, so if I go silent it isn’t necessarily a bad sign. Just conservation of resources.

Just a wee story, like pulling teeth the whole way, but it’s the first time I’ve finished a work of fiction in a very, very long time.

It was always like dreaming for me, something I couldn’t wait to get back to each day, but it hasn’t been like that since before my mother died. I don’t know if the sit-butt-on-chair-and-start-pulling-teeth method is my new reality or just the painful first steps to a full recovery, but I’ll take it either way, or any half-assed step between.

Now for the next story.

Random quote of the day:

“Finish what you’re writing. Whatever you have to do to finish it, finish it.”

—Neil Gaiman, “Ten Rules for Writing Fiction,” The Guardian, 19 February 2010

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this random quote of the day do not necessarily reflect the views of the poster, her immediate family, Laurel and Hardy, Ariana Grande, or the Salvation Army Band. They do, however, sometimes reflect the views of the Cottingley Fairies.

Random quote of the day:

“Let death take me planting my cabbages, indifferent to him, and still less of my garden not being finished.”

—Michel de Montaigne, The Essays, Book 1 (tr. Charles Cotton)

 cabbages4WP@@@

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this random quote of the day do not necessarily reflect the views of the poster, her immediate family, Siegfried and Roy, Leonard Maltin, or the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. They do, however, sometimes reflect the views of the Cottingley Fairies.

 

Random quote of the day:

 

“For me it is torture when I finish a novel.  The good time is when I’m writing.  When I am finished it’s no more fun.”

—Umberto Eco, “Book Notes,” The New York Times, July 12, 1995

 

 


Disclaimer:  The views expressed in this random quote of the day do not necessarily reflect the views of the poster, her immediate family, Siegfried and Roy, Leonard Maltin, or the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. They do, however, sometimes reflect the views of the Cottingley Fairies.

Random quote of the day:

 

“Every book is a purge. At the end of it one is empty…like a dry shell on the beach, waiting for the tide to come in.”

—Daphne Du Maurier, National Geographic, Vol. 120, December 1961

 

 


Disclaimer:  The views expressed in this random quote of the day do not necessarily reflect the views of the poster, her immediate family, Siegfried and Roy, Leonard Maltin, or the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. They do, however, sometimes reflect the views of the Cottingley Fairies.

I don’t want to see it again for a long, long time, until the betas have had at it.

I’m moving on to something new!

Huzzah, huzzay!!!

Thirty chapters, an epilogue, and over 120k (and ohmygod, that has to be cut down a lot), but for now I am

d-o-n-e.