It’s been a long day (a long week so far actually) at the day job, so I don’t know that this will be a long post. That said, I’ve started posts before thinking that and found myself quickly in the 600+ word range and not done yet, so we’ll see how this goes. I’m apparently one of those verbose people you hear about. 😀
In spite of yesterday being the worst Monday of the year (for those of us who do the whole stupid daylight savings time thing), I managed to come home and continue working on editing Possession. It’s kind of good that I did because, as often seems to be the case, doing anything with writing seems to recharge me and wash away the crap from the work day. Even better, I finished. Yes, rewriting the ending and all, I’m done the first pass. I’m quite a lot happier with the ending now, though it still probably needs some work as it’s pretty much first draft and includes a carefully sculpted conversation that I don’t think is quite right yet. But I’ll get there, and this was a necessary first step toward getting there. Like the rest of the first draft, really.
I’m really delighted to find that, having learned the lesson that the first draft is just that, a stepping stone and doesn’t have to be perfect or even publishable, I haven’t forgotten it. I’ve done that enough in the past that I was a bit worried, forgotten a hard-won lesson I mean, but this one I’ve totally internalized. It’s just a start, giving you something to work with. That it won’t be remotely as good as you want isn’t the point at all. The point is that if you don’t have that first draft, you can’t get to the final, quality draft that you will proudly send out into the world.
It’s kind of important for me to keep that in mind, in many ways. For one thing, I can be a total perfectionist, especially when it comes to anything related to myself. Beyond that, as I get into more ambitious projects, things that are more complex, the first draft will be a jumping off point more than anything else. In some ways, that happened with the Mirrors trilogy, of course. I mean, I wrote the first draft of the first book and threw it out the next day as I realized that there were fundamental problems. But that draft was part of me finding out how things worked for this story and the world I was creating. In a way, doing that has already paid dividends in the writing of the second book, and I’m sure it will continue to do so as I work toward and through book 3. If I have to do that with every trilogy or series I ever write, well, I can live with that I think. As long as I get something more out of it than a filed draft that I never look at again, I can view it as a productive use of time.
So, now what? Yeah, you guessed. Possession goes back in the drawer. Knowing me, it’ll be just until next weekend, but I may try to stretch it to the one after. It’ll depend on a number of factors, all having to do with what I might need to do this coming weekend. If I have little to occupy my attention, well, boredom and inactivity breed impatience for me. I’ll probably spend the next couple of days working on the outline for The Nine, and I’m fairly sure I have the skeleton of the rest down, so that may be done by the end of the week if all I need to do is flesh it out in that outline. In that case, though, you can count on the impatience thing rearing it’s head, as that would be two things in the mystic drawer (Possession and the outline for The Nine), which usually causes me to grab the last thing put in there and work on it anyway. I know, I’m bad. I accept that about myself.
In the spirit of continuing to encourage spring to show up as early as possible, here’s another shot from last spring in downtown Vancouver. I’m entirely shameless in my dislike of winter, and the snowflakes that I saw falling here are making me really want to point out to spring that showing up any time now will work just fine for me. I did survive the snow, and it’s all gone now, but that’s not the point. I object to snow being anywhere but the ski slope. Maybe that’s why I moved here. 🙂