Editing, editing, and editing some more



These days are full of colored pens, typed pages, and a clip board. Each day I sit down with the clip board, the chapter at hand staring at me, and I dive into the hard copy and strike words, change sentences, or close my eyes and try to remember why I thought writing a novel was a good idea in the first place. Pen marks made, I move to the computer and fiddle with words, save the draft, stack the marked pages under my desk with the other edited pages, and then grab another chapter and put it on the clip board for the next days work. 

I'm about a third of the way through this - what I hope will be the last - working draft. At this point my family is invested heavily in my work: my husband has read the entire book and has given invaluable feedback, my children ask questions about the characters and plot, and they don't bat an eye if I sit down in the living room with my clip board while they're playing. It's part of our daily lives, our rhythms and routines. 

It has taken much work to get to this point. 

And so I sometimes sit and wonder what the next phase will look like. Honestly, I have no idea. With a self imposed deadline of the end of April for this draft, I should be in good shape to start querying agents this summer. 

With that comes patience, rejection, dedication, but also room to start writing another first draft of something else. The next novel. 

Can I tell you something? The idea of that creates all sorts of butterflies in my stomach. Because yes, it's work. Dreadful and tiring and painful work at times. But... writing books is what I've always wanted to do. 

And I'm doing it. 

So I'll edit on, knowing that this is all part of it. I'll edit on fully knowing that there's no guarantee that this particular book will ever see a bookstore shelf. I'll edit on with hope in my belly and all sorts of questions on my mind, forever thinking about the next book.

Because that's what writers do. We ask questions, and we have unfathomable amounts of hope.



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