Well. I’m back. And what a ride that was! I can hardly describe the sense of elation I feel at having finished this manuscript. It has been four years in the making. I worked on the story for a year, getting my arms around all the elements and sifting through them to see which story path I wanted to take; then it took a year for my editor and agent to convince me this was really a YA at heart, not an adult book, which necessitated looking at the story through an entirely different lens. Then it took another two years to write it as I fit it in between other, contracted projects. And now it is done.
It is 135,000 words, 453 pages. A monster of a masterpiece. And I use that term masterpiece in the old guildish sense--a project that takes your work to a new place. It’s not a statement of objective quality so much as a statement of what I attempted, the way I stretched and challenged myself as a writer. I went places I have never gone before. Whether it works or not is anybody’s guess, but it absolutely worked for me in terms of creative growth. (And I promise, just as soon as my agent gives me the okay, I will blab all about the details here. I really do feel like I’ve been the biggest tease EVER!)
As I said on Facebook, I finished it while surfing on an adrenaline high and humming the theme song to ROCKY. I mean, I was flying high. By the time I went to bed that night, I told my husband that gee, maybe this time I wasn’t going to have my post deadline crash.
I woke up in the middle of the night with a migraine and spent the entire next day as a limp noodle. Ah, the writing life.
And now I get to pick up the pieces of my life, yet again. I guess I just have to accept that this isn’t a one time or even first few times phenomenon but actually a part of my natural cycle. I don't know how to actually finish a manuscript without that obsessive scramble to the finish line that pretty much precludes all of Real Life.
Another annoying thing is that all the great ideas I had for blog entries are nowhere to be found. I should have jotted them down, but they all seemed so self evident that I was positive I wouldn’t forget them. I’m really crossing my fingers that I haven’t truly forgotten them as much as mentally misplaced them. ☺ We’ll find out soon enough, won’t we!