Novel Update #1, or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Editing

Who am I kidding, I’m still worrying.

The first complete rewrite of my labor-of-love-and-insanity is done, as of Saturday afternoon.  I had to scrap both the beginning and most of the ending, I had to write new chapters to take their places, I had to shuffle events in the middle.  I had to clean up character motivations and mannerisms and dialogue.

It felt like a huge triumph.  I celebrated with finger of scotch.

It also feels like I still have miles and miles to go.

Finishing the first draft was much more satisfying.  I didn’t expect, now that I’m closer to the final goal of putting this story in front of readers I don’t actually know, that I would feel like I’m farther away.  Because I know my work is still flawed.  I’m not even sending this draft out to my beta readers for feedback!  Because this draft was to work out the kinks and snarls and gaping plot holes.  I hardly spent any time on cleaning up the language.

So that’s the next pass.  Then, maybe, I can let someone see it.  I’m doing my best to stay positive, but when I see “inspirational” quotes about how X author rewrote Y book 5, 10, even 20 or more times to get it “just right”…I’m beginning to wonder how deep the rabbit hole really goes.

On the bright side, since I finished the plot edit, I’m already five chapters in to the first nitpicking edit.  And it feels good.

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