By Pat Cunningham
It took a while, but I’ve finally finished typing up the second draft of my vampire story from the handwritten first draft. In the course of the typing I added scenes and rewrote some and discovered at least 3-4 chapters could do with a minor overhaul. Yeah, I said chapters; what I thought would be a novella at best bloated up into a medium-length book. After the rewrites are done I’ll need to do a polish, then type the whole thing over again for a third draft, this time into the laptop for emailing purposes, so I’ve still got a fair way to go.
I tell you what, I’m pretty sick of the thing.
It hasn’t all been one continuous stretch. There have been interruptions for a part-time job, story writing for the blog, and the personal hell that was the month of June. Still, I’ve been working on this thing since around January or so, when I first blogged about it. It’s taken me this long to get it into readable shape and I’m still not done. It didn’t die on me and so saved itself from the closet, and I’ve still got enough enthusiasm for the story that I’m not about to abandon it. But boy, could I use a break.
I wish I was one of those writers who can work on two or even three different projects at once, so I could switch off if one story started to bore me. However, I don’t appear to be wired that way. I have to do one at a time. I was working on a Western when the vampires seduced me away. Now they’ve grown familiar and somewhat annoying, but I still like them enough not to shoo them out of the house. I suppose I’m looking to have a brief fling with another plot, but nothing’s really piqued my interest yet, and probably won’t until I finally get this one into polished, publishable shape and send it off to market. Which, at the heel-dragging rate I write, could be another six months.
Thank God I didn’t plan a trilogy. However, that could hit tomorrow.
Soooo … how do you folks handle it? Are you lucky enough to be the type who can multitask on manuscripts so the variety keeps you engaged? Do you write fast enough that you can finish a book while enthusiasm’s still high? If you do need to take a break, how do you get yourself back into the story? Or have stories dried up on you while you were away?
I’m going to try long-handing a short in a different genre just for a change of pace, but I already know that’s not going to be 100% successful. Tired as I am of it, the other one keeps calling me back, begging me to shine it up. Or maybe I should just go ahead and start on the sequel idea that occurred to me while I was writing this one. Yeah, that’s exactly what I need, yet another year with these characters. What did I just say about a trilogy … ?