Three years ago, at 12 am, November 1, 2009, I wrote the first word of my novel. Tonight, at about 9:45 pm, July 24, 2012, I wrote the final word of the first draft. Yikes, that's a long process! I wrote 50,000 words in that first month as part of NaNoWriMo, National Novel Writing Month. Aspiring writers from all over the country band together to make the 50,000 word goal, which is a short novel or a pretty good start on a longer one.
So it took me 30 days to write the first 50,000 words. And almost 3 years to write the last 31,000. I have issues.
Writing is an interesting thing for me. I love it. I really do. I love coming up with just the right word to convey an idea. I love painting a picture, setting a scene. But I'm also a procrastinator. I can sit and think about my novel for hours, but when it comes to actually getting the words down, I stink.
I have always been a writer. When I was in 3rd grade, I won a writing contest for the state of Iowa for my story about a wayward, cognizant tooth named Jenny. I wish I had kept all my writings, because I can think of many short stories I've written that I'd like to revisit. This novel that I just finished wasn't even my first start on a novel. I have several starts, one pretty decent one.
I don't know why I can't seem to get things down. All those stories running around in my head. And as I got closer to finishing, it got even harder. Plus, I would spend time psychoanalyzing why it was so hard for me to sit down and finish my novel. Because the hardest part is yet to come. Letting people read it, revising, rewriting, and (gulp!) possibly trying to get published! Preparing for criticism and rejection after baring a very private part of myself.
I guess this is what strippers feel like.
Anyway, I am super excited about the prospect of being rejected by a bunch of publishers ;) Right now I have a good group of people test reading for me. Hopefully they'll be honest about whether it's even worthy of trying to be published. But no matter what happens, I'm pretty sure I can add "novelist" to my career list. As long as one person reads it, it counts.
Even if it's just my mom.
Laugh on :)