Normally I would post this on my author blog (and I will eventually), but since it's leading to something personal, I'm posting it here first.
Yesterday evening, I finished writing my second book. And by second book I don't mean the second book I've ever written - this is probably my fourth or fifth - I mean the second book I intend to have published. My first novel, Blue Sky Days, was contemporary YA romance/coming-of-age, and this one is women's fiction/chick lit.
I started writing this book on January 19th, two days after Blue Sky Days was officially published. I had another story idea in mind that I planned to go with, but I got this idea and after scribbling a dozen pages of notes, I knew I had to go with it while I had the momentum. I hoped to have it done within a couple of months, but then I started watching Logan every day, and I had to cut my writing time back. There have been so many distractions and setbacks, I was honestly beginning to think I'd never finish writing it. I know five months isn't really a long time, especially for writing a novel, but it felt so much longer than that.
Anyway, I forced myself to sit and write yesterday, and after writing about 5,700 words (possibly a personal record), I finished the book. I was so excited, I was practically hyperventilating. I'm so used to feeling numb most of the time that the excitement was almost overwhelming. It was completely foreign, but it was also amazing.
The final word count was 103,971 words, which absolutely floored me. I kept track as I went so I'd know my daily count, but I never in a million years thought I'd be able to write a book that was that long. Blue Sky Days was about 84,000 words I think, and a huge chunk of that was written during revisions.
The first thing I did when I finished writing was run out to tell my mum. She knew I was close, so she'd been waiting most of the afternoon with bated breath for me to come tell her I was done. My next instinct was to tell my Grama...even after all these months, she's still in the forefront of my mind. I looked at Mum and knew she was thinking the same thing, especially when her eyes filled with tears.
It was a really bittersweet moment - finally finishing my book, and knowing how incredibly proud she would be, but not getting to tell her. Next to my mum, Grama was my biggest supporter and biggest fan. She was always asking me about my writing, wanting to know how it was going and what I was working on. Even in the hospital the days before she died, she wanted to hear all about how Blue Sky Days was coming. My one and only regret when it comes to her is that she didn't get to read it. That grieves me immensely, and I'm afraid it'll haunt me for the rest of my life.
My next step was to email my cousin, who's been a big support, and who was also a beta reader for Blue Sky Days, as well as the book of short erotic stories I'll be publishing in the next few weeks. Next, I messaged a childhood friend who I reconnected with a few years ago, and told her. Her excitement and encouragement and support made my heart burst with happiness. Finally, I messaged a friend on the west coast who I met at a U2 concert last July, and who I've been in touch with almost every day since. I was so touched by their excitement and how proud they were of me. It made the moment that much more special and memorable.
Now comes the long and exhausting process of revising and editing, which I have a love/hate relationship with. For more on that, keep an eye on my author blog and also my book blog (yes, I have three blogs...there's nothing like confusing people). I'm drawing a blank on cover design, but hopefully I'll get that straightened out soon and be able to do a cover reveal - stay tuned!