[personal profile] rj_anderson
I suspect I've used that subject line before, but really, what could be more appropriate? I feel like I've been on a long journey these past couple of months, wandering through the misty wastelands of my own imagination without knowing where I'd end up, or whether it would be worth the trip when I got there. However, I am happy to say that as of yesterday I was able to turn in a complete draft of Swift to my editor -- and that yes, it is a story, and I'm pleased with it.

Erin Bow has just written an excellent post about What it's like to finish a book: or, one writer's neurosis in three stages which sums up my own feelings at the moment pretty well. Except that she and I differ in one significant aspect: she writes that "editing doesn’t produce the adrenaline to which one can become addicted in the rush of finishing a book. Certainly it doesn’t fill the same place in the heart..." Whereas for me, the revision stage sometimes does produce that kind of ecstatic rush, and it is definitely dearer to my heart than the thrash-and-flail process of first drafting. Once I know where the story's going (and that there is a story), I can stop worrying about the plot and concentrate on the details of character, dialogue, and the little touches of worldbuilding that will take the book to the next level.

But that will come in a few weeks, once my editor's had the chance to go over the manuscript and write me one of her lovely insightful letters suggesting all the ways in which it can be better. All sorts of things are bound to change in the ensuing revision process, and that'll be a challenge of its own. But for the moment I'm content. Not to mention excited about the potential not only of this particular novel, but of the book(s) to come... and that's a nice place to be.
Tags:

Date: 2011-07-08 04:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] olmue.livejournal.com
Yay on the completed draft! And I'm definitely with you on the editing part.

Date: 2011-07-08 04:54 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pameladean.livejournal.com
Yay book!

P.

Date: 2011-07-08 04:55 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pameladean.livejournal.com
I too am with you on the editing part. I get some of my most amazing insights in the process of revision, when I am not panicking at the vast blank spaces yet to be filled with imagination.

P.

Date: 2011-07-08 01:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
vast blank spaces yet to be filled with imagination

What an excellent way to put it! Exactly how I feel. Some writers find that blankness exciting and liberating, but I usually just find it nerve-wracking and exhausting.

Date: 2011-07-08 09:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pameladean.livejournal.com
Yes indeed.

There's a lot of talk too about writers who can't made a decision about what will happen because it closes off possibilities. And I'm over here saying, "Close them off, for goodness' sake, close them off before they eat me."

P.

Date: 2011-07-08 11:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Oh, yes! I can work with limitations just fine -- in fact they often stimulate me to more creativity. But unlimited possibilities, ack!

Date: 2011-07-08 08:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] alawston.livejournal.com
Welcome back!

Date: 2011-07-08 01:11 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Thank you! I'm happy to be back!

Date: 2011-07-08 11:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rose-in-shadow.livejournal.com
Yay, congrats! Can you tell us anything about Swift or is it all still very Top Secret? :D

I only get that excited-to-edit feeling for the first time I'm looking at it. It starts to wane with every subsequent feeling until I'm sick of looking at it it.

Date: 2011-07-08 01:16 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
I can tell you a few things I've mentioned elsewhere: the book is set in Cornwall, it involves a group of piskeys* who live in an abandoned mine, the heroine is named Ivy, and although it's the first book in a series meant to stand on its own, that doesn't rule out bumping into one or two characters we've met before...

--
* "Piskey" is the Cornish variation of "pixie". I prefer the former, as it's more earthy-sounding and less sparkly-cute... not to mention Cornish.

Date: 2011-07-08 08:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rose-in-shadow.livejournal.com
Sounds fun!

What's the difference (if any) between a faery and a piskey?

Date: 2011-07-08 09:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Oh, there are differences. You'll just have to wait to find out what they are. :D

Date: 2011-07-08 09:10 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rose-in-shadow.livejournal.com
lol. Okay, in that case, I will picture them like the pixies from Fairly OddParents (http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=fairly+oddparents+pixies&go=&qs=n&sk=&sc=5-21&form=QBIR#x0y0) until you say otherwise.

;)

Date: 2011-07-08 11:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Otherwise. ;)

Date: 2011-07-08 05:07 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tinpra.livejournal.com
Welcome back (I almost said welcome home)! And hooray on finishing the draft! I unfortunately disagree with you about editing vs. writing. I find editing so daunting, at least to get into. Once I get past my own....whatever-my-issue-is, I find it goes very well, but I always approach it with trepidation.

Date: 2011-07-10 01:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Well, it's never effortless. I just feel that revision can only make the book better -- it seldom makes it worse.

Date: 2011-07-10 12:42 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] miriam forster (from livejournal.com)
Hooray for finishing! And good for you. :)

I'm with you on the editing love. I would rather be revising than first-drafting any day of the week.

Sadly, if I don't write a first draft, I'll have nothing TO edit. Sigh...

Date: 2011-07-10 01:58 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
This is the problem, yes. You have to eat your first draft vegetables to get the revision dessert. :)

And thank you!

Date: 2011-07-17 03:25 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] areth-lovejoy.livejournal.com
Yay!!!! SWIFT is one of my top to-reads for 2012:) Have a fantastic summer!

Date: 2011-07-20 03:09 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] death-ofme.livejournal.com
Congrats! And may I say perfect timing in order for us to get better acquainted and geek out over mad Serbian scientists who decide downtown Manhattan is the perfect place to experiment with an earthquake machine. And feed pigeons.

Date: 2011-07-20 12:05 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] rj-anderson.livejournal.com
Heh. I was tempted the other day to write a story about Tesla's favourite pigeon... I think there might have been more to that bird than met the eye. :)

I went looking for a biography of Tesla the other day in my local library, and what did I find? Twenty books on Edison and four on Marconi in the children's section alone. But not one thing on Tesla, EXCEPT one slim printed copy of the play by the Electric Theatre Company, with J-Yo on the cover. Which was not a bad discovery, as I'd always been curious about it, but still. FAIL, library. FAIL.

Date: 2011-07-20 04:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] death-ofme.livejournal.com
That's still a pretty nifty find! I don't think the libraries in TO have any of the Electric Company's plays...which is a pity. I would REALLY want to read a few of theirs (like Tesla, and Tear the Curtain).

You can definitely find a lot about him on cracked.com though. Along with Batman, Nikola Tesla seems to be this website's hero and they throw him into articles whenever they have the opportunity xD

Date: 2011-07-26 03:00 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] aurora-requiem.livejournal.com
I am so happy that you've finished your latest story. It's like a big awesome victory for the literary world.

Sad to see that Borders bookstores are closing. My heart breaks. (That being said, only up to 40% off? So stingy, Borders.)

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