I finished my most recent novel not half an hour ago. I think it is the best thing I’ve ever done. In fairness to my other books, I always think that about my most recent novel. This time, however, I think that it is true.
I'll spend the balance of the weekend polishing and burnishing, perhaps with some sanding thrown in for good measure. Some time on Monday, I’ll send it off to my agent. From there, I really am not sure what will happen this time because this particular book was an entirely new journey for me. It’s in a different genre and much darker than my work has tended to be and dealing with topics I’ve never tackled in fiction before.
This book seems overall more special to me, too. It came at me without forethought or planning and presented itself, pretty much in the form that my agent will see it, in one elegant swoosh. I started with the germ of an idea back in November and now, here I am, a finished book in hand.
While the actual writing tends to go quickly for me, the gestation period for my novels is usually much longer. Generally between the time I get a glimmer of story and when I sit down to write, there is a much longer period. Sometimes a year, occasionally more.
So this note, I guess, is a bit of self-congratulations. It’s always a good feeling, when you finish a book. You want to celebrate, but you move towards that cautiously. After all, from the last stroke of my pen to the point you’ll hold a finished book in your hands is a fairly laborious journey, fraught with danger and unexpected twists and turns.
So the book is finished. But this book’s story? It’s just begun.