Deadlines are great! Love'em! They really do challenge me to get my time management in order and focus focus focus. Anyhoo...I just submitted the last chunk of my freshly edited manuscript to my editor, a lady I found via the Editorial Freelancers Association. Needless to say I am silly proud of myself for submitting my manuscript a day ahead of schedule, and - to make my pride swell a tiny bit more - I would have submitted it yesterday, had my laptop not come down with a serious case of the Harddrive Crash.
In the 2.5 years that I've spent working on 'Billie Lupescu' so far I've done several cycles with an editor regarding language, spelling and some story edits. And I hired an editor to do a manuscript report in late 2011 (jeez, what was I thinking? I was nowhere NEAR done and still looking for the actual genre and age group!) With each cycle and that tough love manuscript report came a huge jump in my learning curve. It seems I best learn to do things by doing them - and making every single mistake in existence.
As it stands today, the book clocks in at roughly 75.000 words - the minimum word count needed for an Urban Fantasy Novel according to my editor, should I attempt to go the Traditional Publisher route. And I get a kick out of seeing the page count in my word document, which is 362, if you must know. Now I can step away from the story for a few weeks until my editor gets back to me with her manuscript report. I can start thinking about the next book and - the excitement!!! - read a few books in the meantime. I don't know about you, but I have a very hard time reading fiction when I'm in the middle of writing a book. Which means my quota of books read has dramatically dropped, much to my dismay. But I simply don't have the mental energy to invest in a full blown story. And I'm afraid I might end up stealing stuff - words, phrases, or even plot points. So only non-fiction for me for the most part.
I will keep you posted on where this cycle of editing takes me. Will I burn the damned thing because it sucks? Will I just have to do some minor plot corrections and then finally have it proof read (PHAT chance of that)? Or will it be something between these two (most likely)?
I'll let you know. In the meantime, tell me about your reading habits while writing. Do you not read at all and only watch silly TV shows? Or are you capable of separating your writing from what you read? Feel free to discuss below.
1. You must write.
2. You must finish what you write.
3. You must refrain from rewriting, except to editorial order.
4. You must put the work on the market.
5. You must keep the work on the market until it is sold.
See the full post on Heinlein's article from 1947 here:
Image credit: www.3vildead.com