I Feel Good

I have a complete manuscript.

Which is not to say a polished complete manuscript. Just a done enough manuscript, and by done enough, I mean done enough that I’m going to freakin celebrate.

83,541 words.

Thirty-one chapters.

One deliciously satisfying ending.

Here’s what it feels like:


It crept up on me suddenly. Has that ever happened to you? Just when it feels like you will never, ever, ever be done. Suddenly, it’s done.

I was down at the lake when it happened, down where I get most of my best inspiration. Staring at the water, thinking about Tory.

Where all my best inspiration happens

What else will readers want to know about how things turn out for Tory? And I realized there was nothing else. Just one tiny scene for one other character. One little piece and it would be tied up, done.

Then I wrote it.

Then I printed the denouement scenes, did a little cutting & pasting, and paper clipped it all together in the right order.

And, just by chance, the last line happened to be at the end in the new order. And it was a perfect last line. Not perfect as in polished, of course. Just that THAT character saying THAT thing is the perfect ending for THIS book.

I’m sorry this post is so scattered. I don’t really have anything earth-shattering to share. It just didn’t feel right not to record this momentous moment. To make up for it, here’s James Brown singing about me. You’re welcome.

P.S. To be clear, I am well aware that I am not DONE. There will be plenty, plenty more revision. Then edits. Beta readers. More revisions. More edits. Polishing. Query letters. Elevator pitches. Agent submissions. Piles of rejection slips. Probably the remaining parts of this journey will be just as painful and awful as the first round of revisions has been. Maybe more. I KNOW. Stop raining on my parade.

P.P.S. I will now take a deliberate, planned one-week break from the work. After I transfer the manual work I did today into the digital document. I may or may not be here, on this blog, during my break. I’ll be back.

9 thoughts on “I Feel Good

  1. Wow, super congrats to you. :)

    I have a blog post coming up (scheduled for Tuesday) that addresses the last bit of your post . . . about how to deal with all the hard parts in their own time. For the record, as far as I’m concerned, you’re doing it RIGHT.

    I can’t wait to hear more about everything you’re doing. You’re going to be great.

    • Abby! I almost tagged you in my post on FB and then I thought, “But there are so many I want to tag, and what if I leave anyone out??” You were the first I thought to tag, though. You inspired me to start.

      • :D I think my heart grew three sizes. Which is good. Because I am exhausted and will be riding on love to get me through everything I need to do before I go to bed. I love you Heather! :)

  2. Congratulations! It’s good you are celebrating the milestones.

    Question: Do you write on the computer or on a notepad? I’m starting to think I should write on notepads. I don’t want to, because it’s “more work”…. but I stay focused longer and isn’t that the real struggle? One of the few YA authors whom I can really tell works on her stuff writes longhand. And leaves notes to robbers to not steal her stuff and did I mention I love her?

    • Thanks, Jaimie! It’s a little funny to me that we’re conversing with each other across blogs tonight. :)

      I most DEFINITELY write on the computer. Ermagerd. (I have no idea why that particular exclamation just occurred to me. Sure sign of the decline of civilization. I digress.) I can’t imagine working by hand–so slow!

      Oh. My gosh. I just read your link. I love her. I’ve never heard of her, and I love her. Such a perfectly wonderful description of the process, in all its crazy insanity. And I laughed out LOUD (literally) at the part about coming back from vacation.

      Thank you for sharing her with me.

  3. Pingback: On Faith and Fiction ¶ Writer for Life

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