And relax… (sort of)

On Thursday evening, I wrote until my brain could take no more and went to bed frustrated.

On Friday morning, I got up in time to shower and feed and dress Arthur and I before we had to leave the house just after half past eight, managing to squeeze a couple more hundred words in between it all: but still it wasn’t enough.

Once Arthur had been safely delivered to his gymnastics class, I sat myself down with my laptop. I was surrounded by screaming kids and chatting mums, and had just under an hour to bring my story to its conclusion. And with seconds to spare before I wrapped Arthur up in a cuddle and we continued with our day, this happened:

IMG_1508.jpg

Having set myself a somewhat cursory target of 90,000 words, and broken it down way less rigidly than with my first two novels, I was a little intrigued to discover that as I approached that magic number the story did appear to naturally be coming to a close. I had been all prepared, after the two ‘deadline extensions’ I already given myself, to move the goalposts yet again even after that progress bar had turned its satisfying deep green. But, as it turned out, only 784 additional words were needed before I could safely say that the first draft was done.

It’s a good feeling, coming to the end of a first draft. Even now that I understand just how much work goes on after that point – way more, actually, in terms of both hours and mental exertion – it still feels good to get all of the raw material out of my head and onto (virtual) paper.

And so, to an extent, I can now relax. Except, of course, I can’t.

Along with all of the other endless jobs on my to-do list, I have set myself a bit of an epic mission for this summer. It’s the mission that, if I’m successful, will take me beyond the realm of ‘someone who writes’ into the heady heights of ‘professional writer’.

It is the mission to get published.

I’m keeping an open mind at the moment about how that will happen and with whose help, but it really is time I started to take things to the next level. I haven’t had the confidence before now to really push it, and even now I’m quaking in my boots a little.

But I’ve written three whole books.

And whilst they all still need a bit more work, I have reached a point where I don’t think I can justify turning my attention to another before the ones I’ve written are given a real opportunity to shine.

So there won’t be much relaxing here. There will be lots of research, and investigation, and soul-searching, and letter-writing, and self-promotion. But hopefully by the end of it, once this latest first draft has sat for a while and is ready for me to turn my attention to it once again, I will have a much clearer idea of where it’s all going.

That’s the plan, anyway…

 

Writing Bubble

17 thoughts on “And relax… (sort of)

  1. maddy@writingbubble

    Such exciting news – both the finishing of the first draft and also the plan to get published! Well done for getting those words out and of course I will be cheering you on this summer. Thanks for linking to #WhatImWriting

    Reply
  2. quintessentialeditor

    Congrats on finishing a third (jealous)! Especially given the circumstances you were working within. Best of luck moving forward.

    Reply
  3. EMA

    Well done. I just finished the first draft of my second book on Sunday and hit 92,000 words. I didn’t have a goal, just to get it finished, but it seems like a pretty healthy word count in general. I’m taking a break now and am half looking forward to and half dreading the edit!

    Reply
  4. johannewinwood

    Well done you! You’re a real inspiration to those of us who are struggling to get that first draft written showing us it is possible. Fingers crossed that you manage to get your work published.

    Reply
    1. sophieblovett Post author

      Thank you for the vote of confidence as always! I’m feeling all fired up about the publication thing at the moment, so let’s see where it goes… xx

      Reply
  5. Rachael

    “But I’ve written three whole books.”

    Wow. I know you’re on a mission but I hope you take more than a moment to really congratulate yourself on this amazing achievement in itself – and congrats on completing this third! Amazing how the word count just worked out, it must feel great. Good luck with the publishing – sure more success is on its way! x

    Reply
  6. turningupindevon

    Wow, writing 3 books is such an achievement, like you say, it’s time to get ’em out there, or at least one at time. Wishing you lots of good luck with that 🙂 Whatimwriting

    Reply
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