Well, I did it. I set myself a goal to write a fifteen-chapter novel in fifteen days. I ended up needing an extra chapter, so I wrote a sixteen-chapter novel in sixteen days. I have officially completed the Write Your Novel This Summer Challenge!
At 83 pages and 22,935 words, my first draft is (obviously) full of holes. However, the important thing is that I finished it. The entire story is on the page. I have a beginning, middle, and an end. I did not write a single unnecessary scene. I wrote only the pieces that absolutely had to be there to hold the puzzle together. Now, on to draft #2!
What’s next for me?
Well, to celebrate completing my crappy first draft (because all first drafts are crappy,) I am taking my kids off on a little staycation to Madison, WI. We’re going to spend a couple of nights in a hotel room and go to some museums and such. (We’ll probably be on our way home by the time you read this, as I am posting in advance and scheduling the post to run Friday morning.)
After I return from Madison, I will probably spend most of next week working on lesson plans for work. Classes start on the 26th, so I guess it’s time for me to accept that I am not going to find that full-time job I’ve been searching for all summer. I’m going to have to sign my teaching contracts soon. Once that happens, I’ll be locked into this part-time job for another semester. It’s not ideal, but I suppose it beats being unemployed and homeless.
The first week of classes will likely be busy. I expect to spend the next two weeks focused on work. But the great thing about working part-time is that I will have lots of writing time once I get myself settled in for the semester. I’m only teaching four courses this semester, so work should not be too much of a hindrance.
A two week break from writing is probably exactly what I need right now anyway. I’m a little exhausted from writing so much in such a short period of time. Plus, I want to put the novel aside now so it can compost (fester?) a bit before I look at it again with fresh eyes. I am not even going to read what I wrote until I have time to sit down and really dig into it.
My next writing goal is to complete the second draft of this novel by the end of the summer novel writing challenge. What’s your next writing goal? Please share in the comments below.
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