I finished the first draft of my latest novel last week. Yeah!!!!
That’s cause to celebrate because there were times when this novel got so convoluted that I was worried that it would never get finished. Right now it’s long, longer than any book I’ve ever written, but that will change soon because next up is the revision process.
Different authors deal with this differently. I like to take a week or two off and not think about the book for awhile. Usually I use that time to write something else. I had an idea for a short novella so I’m working on that before I go back to start revising the first draft of my novel.
When I go back through the book to revise it the first thing I do is read it and take notes. I need to make sure characters stay consistent throughout the book. There tends to be a lot of changes in first drafts. I end up cutting lots of stuff out. I also end up changing some characters’ personalities and changing character names. As I’m writing a first draft there are aspects of the characters and the storyline that evolve. In the end I have to go back to look at these things and make sure they mentioned in the beginning of the book.
I normally do two or three read throughs and edits before I send it to my beta readers. My beta readers get it and they usually take about two weeks with the book. When I get it back from them I read over their notes and make appropriate changes. Then I do another read through before sending it to my editor.
Once I get the book back from my editor I carefully go through her notes and make corrections to the manuscript. Once I’ve finished that I do a final read through to catch any mistakes I might have missed. I always do this read through out loud. I find that reading slowly out loud really helps any mistakes stand out to me.
That’s the process I’ll be going through next month. It’s tough but worth it. By the end of the month I’ll be so tired of reading that book, but I’ll also be so excited to get it published.
Being a writer is great. If any of you have always wanted to write a book get started. Having the finished product makes the struggle of getting there well worth it.