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Acknowledging Tuesday

Pardon my meanderings. I have massage therapy brain.

So. I wrote a book. I finished at 87,890 words on June 16 at 2am. It took six weeks. I cannot stress enough how this was not an edit of Chrysalis where I changed a few sentences or added a few new scenes. I completely rewrote the book. Every scene is new.

This means it's a first draft. More on what that means later.

I've kinda been in shock since I woke up on Saturday. I've spent the last month writing seven to eight hours a day. It hasn't been consecutive, because I took breaks every 500-800 words to reset my brain. I would watch an episode of an anime and then go back to writing. Essentially, all I did was work, eat, sleep, and write for an entire month. By the way, half of new!Chrysalis was written in these last two weeks.

I didn't know what to do with myself. I needed to take a break for at least a day but I couldn't stop thinking about it. So I rewrote my editing notes and decided watching Higurashi no naku Koro ni (When the Cicadas Cry) was the best idea ever. I was in shock.

Then Charisse posted the weekend game and because I desperately needed to write something, I decided to play. If you haven't looked at it, please do. She broke something within me and now I can't stop writing zombie!Chrysalis. If Brittany hadn't pointed out to me the potential in marketing it later, I might be hating myself just a little bit. You know, if I wasn't laughing manically at all my inside jokes.

In the end, I think I did a few things right because new!Chrysalis is my best writing so far. I was able to get the muddy feedback I'd received through rejections, beta readers, and taking a huge break to help me craft and ultimately rewrite a better book. So, I acknowledge the follow:
  1. After declaring war on my writer's block, I wrote every day. It started out slow. One week I only had 4000 words to show for my efforts. But, like any sort of consistent exercise, it got easier to do more. At the end I averaged 3,000 words a day. I found my inner turtle and she finished the race.
  2. There are three anime that allowed me to power through the hard parts: Hiiro no Kakera, The Knight in the Area, and The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya. One is paranormal romance, one is about soccer, and I think the last qualifies as urban fantasy. I also have a huge desire to write a non-linear book. I rewarded myself for the little stuff.
  3. And most importantly, my little sister needs another shout out. I called her every day and read her the new material. She was the perfect beta. She liked most of what she heard, but if something didn't make sense, or if it rubbed her the wrong way, she was very upfront about it. I've never had such a balanced reader before. Also, I made her cry. Lots. >.> I welcomed the feedback.
Now for the next step. As I mentioned, this is a first draft. It has all the problems of a first draft--spelling, pacing, plotting, lack of description, passive voice, and too many words. I have a List. These next few weeks I'm going work hard to make it into something I can show others. 

Then comes writing a new query letter. I want to start submitting again in August, which is only six weeks away. This, too, will I turtle. I'm not worried. 

And if all else fails, I have zombies to play with.

Comments

( 4 comments — Leave a comment )
brittany_hok
Jun. 21st, 2012 01:58 am (UTC)
^__________^ CONGRATULATIONS!!! This makes three, right? Three books that you've written? Didn't Brandon Sanderson count his massive re-writes as separate books, too? So when he said his 12th book was the one that he sold first, it wasn't necessarily the twelfth separate story? Anyway. You did the work for a different book, and you totally deserve the credit for writing a different book. I'm excited to see what you've done with it!

I think I just need to get back into a writing routine in order for the words and ideas to flow. It's been so long since I wrote regularly that it's hard to start up again. I'm like a faucet that coughs words irregularly from disuse.

Kudos to Erin! How did you manage to make her cry without crying yourself while you were reading? I have a terrible time reading out loud things I wrote that are emotional to me. Do you have that problem?
gwynne_hok
Jun. 21st, 2012 02:34 am (UTC)
Thank you! It does, indeed, make three. In one of my more recent posts, I admitted to thinking Brandon Sanderson was cheating in his book count until I started working on New!Chrysalis. I've eat much humble pie for that >.>

A writing routine is essential. I'm keeping mine up just so my ability to spit out words doesn't atrophy while I edit. Also, turtling is much better in the long run than rabbiting...

Erin was amazing. I think I didn't cry because I was too close to it. Or I was in God-Mode and had no sympathy to spare for the tribulations of my characters. Or I have a stone for a heart. Reading to her became almost a compulsion. There was one weekend I wrote nearly 9k and didn't get to talk to her until the following Tuesday. It nearly killed me. Also, I don't have a good reading voice ^^;;
brooke_hok
Jun. 23rd, 2012 02:22 am (UTC)
Wohoo! That is awesome!!! And when is watching Higarashi no naku Koro ni not the best idea ever? ^o~

Congrats on finishing your book--and in doing it in such spectacular fashion! Good luck ploughing through your edits. You can totally do it!

(I like exclamation points today!!! Have you noticed?!!!)
gwynne_hok
Jun. 25th, 2012 07:28 pm (UTC)
Yay exclamation points!! I like them too >.>

I have one arc left of the first season of Higurashi...I have this rule about not eating when I watch it, so I'm stuck there. Not because the Mion/Shion Answer Arc nearly destroyed me...

And thank you ^^;; I'm halfway through and hope to be done by the end of the week. That way I can send it to people and they can tell me I'm not as awesome as I think I am right now.

I'm in shock still.
( 4 comments — Leave a comment )

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