I have taken this coming week off in order to work on my novel. But I’ve decided to spend today, all day, working on it. I’m doing this for two reasons. First, I absolutely want to get a a running start on the week. What better way to go into a week’s worth of writing than with a head of steam from a weekend’s worth of writing. The second reason is that I am actually within striking distance of finishing the draft by the end of the week, but I need a good day today to make it.
I’ve got approximately 44 chapters to go. I say approximate because in editing the 3rd draft I’ve inserted two new chapters, but with all of the inserts and moves I may end up collapsing some chapters back together. We’ll see. There are 365 pages left, but I’m trying to work in discreet units of chapters at this point. All of that said, I need to do 7 chapters a day or 60 pages.
My original goal for today was 6 chapters, which seems easy since it’s not even 8 am as I write this post. That said, I feel a little anxious because I know even when I’m moving fast, these things always take longer than planned. I am also anxious because I feel a certain tension between getting it done in the week I set aside and doing it well. What I mean by that is that I feel fairly confident that I can get all the way through the draft in the next six days if I am diligent and disciplined. What I am not confident in is if I will do it well — really improve the work as best I can.
This idea of how much I can improve the work is interesting for two reasons (I must be setting up dichotomies in my mind today). The first is that I really want to have a decent book for the stylish ladies to read. Yes, I am actually feeling the pressure of a readership. For me, even though I have had a non-writer friend explain it to me twice (what can I say I’m thick), I have trouble getting my brain around why someone would volunteer to read my book and give me feedback. It seems like an awful lot of trouble to go through, particularly if it’s not a good book. That’s the crux of it, if I can make the book better then it won’t be a bad experience for them and it might be worth their effort. I know the book is decent, I’ve been told that. I know that it can be better. I just hope that it’s good enough to give them a positive experience.
I haven’t gotten to the second reason that “how much to improve it” is interesting. I think I will save that for another post, it is now a few minutes past 8 and I’ve got 7 chapters to edit today.