So…I did it. After one final pass, I shed a proverbial tear and put I’m Only Me away. I guess I didn’t realize how much time I actually spent mulling over that document, because now that it’s over, my days seem super long. o.O
I have two beta readers lined up. *I think.* My plan, after reading their gushing reviews of course, is to take a fresh look at my query and start sending that baby out. Obviously, I’ll keep you posted.
Aside from losing a chunk of my daily routine, I have nothing to post on Twitter. Oh, waah, waah. It’s true though. I’ve been posting pretty much daily since January to each day’s hashtag games. Twitter is like instant feedback. You know within a day how a line is received. It’s not 100% accurate and means nothing in the great scheme of life, but it’s just sorta nice. haha. I could still participate, true, but I’m afraid if I go searching for lines to post, I’ll end up diving back into the novel to edit again, and I don’t want to! No! I’ve finally reached a stage where I can say, I’m finished! (That is until the betas are done. Sigh.)
There is a simple solution to this problem: WRITE MORE.
I’ve tried to write something new. I’ve opened a blank document and stared at it. But I’m a believer of an unpopular doctrine that one shouldn’t force these things. Not something you see too often in writing tips. Take, for instance, these:
And here I am doing the exact opposite. But I can’t just start writing, like sit down and just write. Nope. I have to have an idea first. I don’t need a plot. It usually starts with a character first. But I came up blank. If you’d like to read more of my writing tips, go here. (Shameless plug. Sorry not sorry.)
Which leads me back to my other WIP I started in…summer 2016, called What Sam Said. The problem with this novel, aside from its exhausting MC–I’ll get to her in a sec–, well, I have no plan. I don’t know where it’s going, or what should happen, or what other people should live in this world, and so I’m pretty much stuck. That’s the main reason why I haven’t gone back to it. I don’t want to stare at that judge-y blank screen. For I’m Only Me, I knew what was going to happen. I didn’t know the ending actually, but I had some direction. This one, nothing.
So my MC is named Susan, and she was conjured from my angry, cynical, profane, non-filtered mind. She was born right as my career was ending, so all of the feelings surrounding that time in my life manifested themselves into this person. Lily deals with losing her dream too, but she’s more the ‘crushed dreamer’, which makes Susan the pissed-off version who has no dreams. Something like that.
When we first meet Susan, she has separated from her husband and lost her job, both within the same month, although not related events. She has a seven-year-old son, Sam, who she doesn’t understand, and frankly doesn’t like all that much. I mean, she shipped him off to summer camp just so she wouldn’t have to deal with him. Nice, right? She swears too much, she drinks too much, she’s selfish, she’s mean. A bitch for sure. I wanted to write an unsympathetic character, the anti-Lily. 😀 Then again, there’s more to her than that. I haven’t travelled to her past much, but she has some issues. And that’s where the sympathy lives.
Last summer, this story and this character just poured out of me. Come to think of it, I didn’t have a plan then either, but it didn’t seem to matter. Susan was basically writing herself. Whatever she wanted to say or do. She was in charge. Without sounding melodramatic, I essentially became her–in a sense– in order to write from her POV. Writing this way was freeing and cathartic, because I wasn’t censoring myself, and I wasn’t worried about anything. What a great feeling to just have pages spill out.
But that’s all over now! 😦 I don’t feel very “Susan” these days. And honestly, I don’t want to become her for the sake of writing something. I wonder if I did try to write her without being her, how she would sound. I just don’t know. And I don’t know if I’m even making sense at this point.
I may have to shelf Susan and think of her as a coping mechanism for a rough time in my life. I thank her for it, but it’s almost as if she has served her purpose, and it’s time to move on.
In the meantime, I’ll be on the search for new ideas.