Whew! Let me say that again. Whew!
Just finished the first draft of a new mystery. Time to come up for air and take some deep cleansing breaths.
Writing is a full-body experience for me. I lose sleep pondering plot points, my neck and back hurt from being hunched over my keyboard, and the creative part of my brain feels sapped. The book is far from done – a first draft is rough and a misshapen sort of thing. To the writer, an early manuscript is a thing of beauty. But next comes the hard work of rewriting, editing and polishing to make the book something the public will want to feast their eyes upon.
If you want a hint of where this story is set, just take another glance at the picture. I draw upon the history of Australia’s Outback and the struggles of early European settlers.
This time around, with this fifth book (this time, another paranormal mystery), I am fortunate to be working with a few wonderful critique partners. Their sharp eyes and insight has made the process fun and also let me know I have a captivating plot under development. They point out areas that don’t work and offer tips here and there. One of my critique partners lives in Australia and she let me know when I got certain details flat-out wrong. In return, I get to read these other authors’ works-in-progress, offer feedback where I can, and learn from a batch of talented writers. Win-win for me.
My celebration will be brief. A glass of wine and then onto the next stage in the process. This isn’t work. Writing’s a way of life and the best one I could imagine.
***By the way, if you’re counting, you’ll note I only have three mysteries published. What happened to book four? Wild Crime is in production and I should have a release date in the next couple of months. The cover is in the design studio and the manuscript is in what’s called “galley stage,” which is one of the final editing phases. We’re getting close and still on track for publication late this year. I’ll share the cover soon!