Yes, on Wednesday night I finally completed the first draft of the book I’ve been working on since last April. Granted, I took at least three months of that time converting #MoMoLives to be a horror novel, but I’m still not happy because I’m about six weeks behind the schedule I set for myself late in 2016. It’s tempting to blame my tardiness on the election and its aftermath, but the fault is entirely mine.
Unlike some writers, I haven’t had problems with writer’s block during this time – during the work week, I write 35-45 minutes each day during my lunch hour. I’ve gotten fairly productive at it too, usually churning out 500-600 words during that time – one day last week, I think I even got 750 words in. I’m constantly afraid that I’ll sit down for my writing time and have problems getting started, but that hasn’t happened yet.
While working on this book, my problem has been writing on the weekends. I have more hours free for writing then than the other five days of the week combined. Why do I get so little done? Primarily, it due to procrastination. All week, I would tell myself how many words I would produce. Three, four, maybe five thousand words. For certain. Then, without fail, I’d fritter away my afternoon watching football, reading, watching DVDs, or on Twitter. Then in the evening, I’d try to get some writing done and feel too run down or not in the mood, or whatever. By Sunday night, I loathed myself for wasting so much time.
Last weekend wasn’t so bad. I sat myself down at the kitchen table for a couple of hours late Sunday after and cranked out about 2,000 words. If I had been able to do that each weekend throughout the fall, I would have finished the draft before Christmas. At least I proved to myself that I could get work done on the weekend, and it allowed me to finish the draft without having it drag on to this weekend.
My next step is to step away from the draft for a couple of weeks. I’m going to read The Story Grid yet again before I begin revising, and Angie Thomas’ The Hate U Give is calling out for me to read it too. I also plan to write the first draft of the query letter and synopsis as well. There’s not much of a chance that I can have this book revised and back from critique partners in time for Query Kombat, but I think PitchWars is definitely doable.
I don’t have any special celebration planned for finishing this book. I’d rather save it for when I get an agent, whenever that may be.