At dinner the other night I asked my wife if she remembered the last few weeks of her pregnancy with our son. It was eight years ago, I didn’t think she had forgotten which was confirmed when she gave me a confused look and replied she had.
I said I was in that same position in regards to the book she has supportively watched me hammer away at over the last few years. I have had this concept in my head for over a decade and it never, ever, went away no matter how much I shook or ignored it. During that time I, as well as the story, have matured. I never could have written it in my early 20s. Maybe I can’t write it now. But I can try.
I can’t say I’ve been writing it continually for the first decade, I’ve started and stopped several times, and the setting as well as the main characters have shifted considerably over that time as well. However, since three Novembers ago I have devoted many nights to writing potential scenes, dialog, and concepts through long hand, followed by typing and revising on the computer.
The passing of three Novembers is long enough. I need this out of my head and wrapped up. I am so close to finishing, and very ready to give another go at 50,000 words, many of which won’t make it into the completed story.
I know that at the end of this year I will still have a lot of work ahead of me. I haven’t revised many sections as much as I have paid attention to the first two. Though I’m not happy with the way certain areas are written, some seeming wordy or incomplete, I am finally satisfied that I have a final course set, a complete outline from start to finish (yes, I have an ending!) I only need to fill in the holes.
I’ve laughed and cried along with my characters (my wife can tell a few touching stories of me coming to bed shaken or down, sometimes tearing up) but I am ready to start the long next phase of revising.
As this third November’s National Novel Writing Month is upon me I am ready to push myself all the way to the end.