13 August 2021

I finished the book!

Photo by Arno Senoner on Unsplash
Thanks to a series of back-to-back holidays, one vacation day, and two sets of weekends, I have nine days off from work. 

What did I do during this time so far? I essentially locked myself in my apartment and wrote, wrote, wrote. And that's how I finished the book! Huzzah!

282 pages.

79,032 words. 

Is the book really finished? 

HECK NO. 

I have to revise it, and to be honest, I finished the book with sections missing. I wrote little placeholder notes and highlighted them in yellow for me to come back to, then just pressed on without fixing those scenes. 

So the book is complete in that I made it all the way to "the end" of the story, but the story itself has some plot holes and unresolved issues that need to be hammered out in the second draft. 

I feel like a huge chunk of the middle is still missing. There's a romantic relationship that just comes out of nowhere, and I have to go back and lay a proper foundation for that. And I have an ending, but the ending leaves out some information that I think readers will want to know, so I might end up totally redoing that, too. 

The last time I had drafted a book in full was my thesis, and when I finished it, it felt finished. This is the first time I've experienced a finished draft that still feels like it has a lot of work. And it's a bit on the short side for me--I was expecting at least 80,000 words. 

I was advised to sit on the draft for a month before hopping back into it again. Honestly, I don't know if I can last that long. I have a tendency to forget things if I don't address them right away, and I'm worried that's going to happen. I will take a week break at least, but I don't think I can stop thinking about what to do with the novel while I don't touch it. 

I'm also working on all the things I need to do to self-publish it. I went ahead and got the cover art licensed; made cover mockups through Book Brush; paid for interior formatting from Book Design Templates (I used them before for my thesis and was pleased with their work), and downloaded some art for advertising. All of this was relatively inexpensive for me, so that's why I nabbed this stuff so quickly. 

Now I'm trying to save my money for proofreading and copy editing. They are going to be the largest expenses, and I'm legitimately scared about it, because what I need to be saving my money for is the return to America (my work contract in Japan ends July 31, 2022). I'm not sure how to do both at the same time, but I'm going to try it. Honestly, I'm still waiting on two of my economic stimulus checks and that would probably pay for copy editing at least. 

Again, it seems like I'm jumping the gun, but knowing how awful I am with money, I feel like I need to start saving ASAP for these things. 

In the meantime, I'm going to sit on my hands to try not to touch the book while I stress about the future! Whee! 



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