In all reality, I've spent the better part of my time since late-October...WRITING.
I completed NaNoWriMo with just over 53k words, then continued to work on my novel for the next couple months. I typed the words The End in mid-January, then attended a fantastic writing workshop with Donald Maass, which spurred ALL THE EPIPHANIES. I rewrote the last half of my book, then turned it in to my fabulous writing group. From the moment I turned it in to the morning of the meeting, I felt like I was going to throw up or die or both.
I couldn't have asked for a better meeting, though. I got great feedback, and a relatively short revision list for my book baby.
You guys, I am so, so proud of this book. After spending the better part of 8 years writing and rewriting my last book, I wasn't sure going into NaNoWriMo if I could write something new. But I wrote the hell out of this new book, and you know what? It's so much better than the other one. I have really found my voice as a writer, and I've learned and grown so much. This new book...it's me. The last book, I spent years and years trying to figure out WHO I was, what I wanted the book to be, what I could and couldn't say...and so on.
Once I hit my stride, the words wouldn't stop coming. I laughed, I cried, I had an absolute blast writing that book.
And now...well, now I'm going back to the first one.
I know, I know. Sounds silly, right? Why go back to the book I'd spent year after torturous year writing after discovering a new confidence with a new book?
Well, the thing is, I believe in the characters in the first book. I love them. I love the story. I want to give them the book they deserve. And I believe I can do that now. Now that I've figured out how I work, how to be free with my words and not allow self-doubt to censor me, I really believe I can make this book what it was meant to be.
Outlining has proven to be a bitch, though.
The thing I'm struggling with is this: there is a lot to be loved in the original draft. And there are ideas a-plenty to improve it. So, I'm trying to find the balance between the old and new. And let me tell you...it's not easy.
But I've got a self-imposed deadline. I want to have this new version completed by the first week of May. That gives me...two months?
Shit. I'd better get cracking.
PS: How ADORABLE is my new header? My wonderfully amazing best friend and writing lobster, Christina made it for me. She rocks, eh?