The Writing Life: Endings and Beginnings

A few days ago, I entered a new (albeit familiar) realm of the writer’s existence: post-writing. That is, I finished the draft of my latest WIP that actually gets printed out and sent off to critique group and agent (and only to the agent because he said he really wanted to see it, even though it’s still FAR from polished.) It’s not a first draft—I go through the manuscript about a million times before I let anyone besides my beloved first reader/sweetheart read it—but it’s definitely not submission-ready either.

The first few days after sending my baby off, I caught up on all the things I’d ignored in order to finish that rewrite. You know: laundry, bill paying, reacquainting myself with those familiar-seeming people who share the house with me.

And now—I feel a bit lost. It’s time to pack away all those technicolor notecards and sticky notes I used to track plot and character edits.

rewriting_picI keep finding myself booting up the computer and opening the latest draft, ready to rewrite—only to recall that all rewriting is officially on hold until critique time.

For a writer, post-writing is kinda like that period just after a play closes for an actor. For weeks, you live, breathe, and eat theater. Then the show is finished, the set struck, and yet you keep wandering back to the empty theater expecting to find all the hustle and bustle still going on. It’s kinda weird. Kinda sad, but also kinda…freeing. For the first time in a very, very long time, possibilities bloom on the horizon.

I could start another novel…or write a picture book…or research a nonfiction piece…or take a class…or, or, or…!

Endings and beginnings go together, don’t you think?

Happy writing!

:) Cheryl

The hidden price of "productivity" every writer needs to know -

You’ve probably read the same tips I have: Have a smart phone? Check Facebook while standing in line at the post office! Respond to Twitter messages while waiting for your dentist! Catch up on your news feed while sitting on the pot! For years, I thought the path to increased productivity was to squeeze in MORE–more […]