Okay, so while everybody else in America is getting back to work today, I'm inviting you all to sit down and have a glass of bubbly with me instead. That's because I turned in the manuscript for The Dangerous Book for Demon Slayers last night (late last night). While everybody else was at barbeques this past weekend, I was on deadline. But you know what? It was actually a lot of fun watching everything come together.
You write a book in so many pieces and chapters. I don't know about other writers, but I rarely have time to read an entire book in one sitting. That's always my final step - sitting down with a Diet Coke and cookie stash (vital for brain power) and making sure it all hangs together.
Every book is a new experience, at least for me. This morning, I've been thinking about the things I learned while writing The Dangerous Book.
Don't over-think it
When I tried to write the beginning that the book "should" have, it was hard and it didn't quit hit right. When I had the courage to trash that part and write something that amused me, bing, it was exactly what the book needed.
Every manuscript needs a good bikini wax
I know I have a reputation for a super-fast pace, but that's what I like to write (and read). And when you're writing that way, it's important to make every word count. I always think I write tight, but then in edits, it's easy to see a lot of pudge in that manuscript. Cutting out the extra words makes everything read so much better.
A good critique buddy is, well, amazing
My critique partner, Chessie, read the final draft of the manuscript with a colicky baby, a sick toddler and hurricane Gustav blowing into town. And she did a heck of a job. It's a favor I didn't expect, but it sure reminded me how great I have it with her, and why she's such a success with her own work. Dedication, baby!
So let's make a toast to good friends, hard work and the books that make it all worthwhile.