Wednesday, July 05, 2006

Alternate Vacation Plans

The more I revise The Outlaw Bride, the more I get to know the characters. Characters that, after having finished the book (a few times...) I thought I already knew like the back of my hand. But doing this final round of revisions (and I swear this is it, at least until some kind editors requests that I make a few more) I am learning things about them they had kept to themselves up until this point. They keep surprising me. Sometimes in my mind, as I am constructing a scene, planning for it to go a certain way, and I see them wink at me as if to say 'watch this'. Then they totally take the scene over like I wasn't even there.

Geez, you think you know someone...

The revisions themselves aren't going quite as quickly as I had planned. I still want to be finished by end of September at the latest but I'm still back on Chapter 7, slogging away with new scenes and removing old ones. I have the last week in July off and I'm sorely tempted to skip going to the camp and hunkering down here to power through as much of the revisions as possible. I may just do that. I'll have to phone my mom and see just how set she was on having me down there. I don't want to bail on her if she was looking forward to it. Then again, all I was planning on doing was sitting on the couch, avoiding black flies and reading from my pile of TBR books.

But I can't lose anymore time on these revisions. I need to get this done and start querying agents and editors. I'm tired of always feeling like I'm working towards something but never getting there. Impatience is starting to eat at me and I'm feeling like I'm slipping backwards, losing momentum. I need to finish this on time and I think I'll need the week in July to do it. It'll also be a good test run to see if I can keep to a writing schedule when not working. Because someday I'd like to be able to do just that and know that I can do it.

I'll think of that week as a trial run to the life I really want.

8 comments:

Peggy said...

I was thinking about revisions the other day and was wondering when do you know you're really done? I mean, really, you could probably go on forever always making changes. I fear I've changed one of my manuscripts so much that I lost my voice along the way. I wonder if that initial version was the best "voice" version, but I've edited so much, I completely destroyed it.

Rene said...

I know exactly how you feel. I hate the fact it has been a year since I last sent out a query letter. Why don't you get the first 50 pages revised, send out your queries and while you are waiting for a response, work on the revisions?

Kelly said...

I've considered this, but I think I don't want to stop the flow. Doing the querie will take research into which agents I want to target, etc. and I don't want to do anything right now that gets in the way of getting the manuscript done. And the other part (the optimistic side of me) thinks 'what if they ask for a full and you don't have it ready at your fingertips?'.

Melissa Marsh said...

When I had an agent request the full, I still needed to make significant revisions. I took a few months to do it. I don't think they expect you to have the manuscript to them the next day. So I'd go ahead and send out a few queries - at least you'll feel like you're moving ahead.

Bailey Stewart said...

I see both sides - yes, you don't want to stop the flow, and yet you could have some queries out there. Sheesh, the life of a writer. I agree, it might be good to take that week in July and work on the book.

Stacy Dawn said...

I know, sometimes it feels like things will never end and that you are doing the Fred Flinstone run where the feet are moving but you aren't.

Good luck.

Tess said...

I know the feeling. Experienced it last year with WTHR. And am on the opposite end now - stuck in planning. Arrggghhh.

Hope things pick up soon :-)

Julie S said...

I SO know what you mean about learning more about the characters as you progress. I thought I knew mine too, but every scene, every chapter reveals something new. It's kind of exciting, but a little bit annoying too! I have to force myself to not go back and revise, based on every little change.

Good luck with the rest of your revisions!