I reached “The End” on Saturday, as in the end of the first draft of my new book. This one was quite the journey!
For one thing, this was not the book I intended to write. I had a different story in mind altogether that I planned would be my third novel. Life is unpredictable, though, and so is my muse.
After a frustrating day at work back late June, a vague idea started simmering in my head and I sat down to write. It started as a way to just relieve a little stress, but I quickly developed a passion for the project. I had no idea where the story was headed, but I couldn’t wait to find out.
Six months later (with time off to revise and publish book 2), I have a completed manuscript.
Along the way, the title changed. It began as The Line and will be published as Aggravated Circumstances.
The ending also changed, thanks to something surprising that one if my characters revealed to me (and her spouse) in Chapter 25. The revelation was such that my original planned ending became impossible.
There were other surprises along the way, such as one of my characters having a job meltdown two-thirds of the way through the book, precipitating a career change. She’s happier now, and so am I.
Not everything was smooth sailing. I struggled with one character and had some false starts with her story, until about halfway through when things began to fall into place for her. The bulk of my work in the revision process will be working some aspects of her conflict in earlier in the book.
This book is significant for me in several ways.
It’s the first novel I have written that did not originally start as a Nanowrimo project, proving my theory that I don’t need the Nano pressures and deadlines to keep writing. I have my own inner motivation now to write everyday.
This book also marks the first time I have written in first person, present tense, a narrative style I used for one of the characters’ perspectives that I think is really effective (even though some of my crit partners raised a few eyebrows at first).
In addition, this book is a little darker and grittier than my first two, although I think it still has some lighthearted elements to it.
All in all, I’m very pleased with how the book came together. It’s rough. It needs some work. But I think it has a lot of potential. Now that I’ve reached the end, I’ve also reached the beginning- the beginning of the revision process.
After a much needed break from the project, and time off for the holidays, I’ll be starting revisions in January with the anticipation of publishing in May.
Keep checking back for more information about the new book, including a reveal of the cover art.