Yep, I did it again. Now, you might ask, didn’t I just finish a novel six months ago? Why am I writing another one? Is that other one revised? What’s going on here?
Well, it’s kind of a pipeline issue. This Beautiful Fever still hasn’t gone out on submission yet, and I can’t really have two YA novels out on submission at the same time, so Enter Title Here probably wouldn’t go out on submission until next spring / summer (at the earliest) anyway, which kind of takes some of the impetus off of revising it. And I also kind of wanted to turn in a portion of a novel for my thesis (due this January!), but it’s a bit hard to turn in a YA novel to an MFA program. I mean, it’s doable, but how good is the feedback really going to be?
And then, last April, I got a great idea for a short story. And the story spiralled out of control and became a novella that I then turned in to my workshop. But even the novella felt like it needed to be longer, so I decided it should probably be a novel. And since I’d already turned it in to my workshop, it’d be pretty easy to turn it in as my thesis (at Hopkins, your thesis needs to be something you’ve run through the workshop).
So anyway, I know that it’s very difficult to work on anything novel-length during the semester (because you’re constantly interrupted by deadlines for short stories), so I felt like I needed to husband my resources this summer. To that end, I decided that my priorities would (in order) be: a) Revise This Beautiful Fever accorded to agent comments; b) Write a first draft of Production Diary… (the novel I just completed; and c) Revise Enter Title Here at least enough that I could send it to first readers.
That way, This Beautiful Fever can (hopefully) go on submission during the spring and I can get comments back on Enter Title Here during the semester and then revise both it and Production Diary during the winter.
Anyways, I allocated about a month for each task, but everything got kind of skewed because revising This Beautiful Fever only took a week and drafting Production Diary took two months. Furthermore, two weeks ago, I got another round of comments on This Beautiful Fever, so now I’m going to revise that again.
Hopefully I can get to Enter Title Here sometime in August. (Dudes, I still have SIX more weeks of summer!)
Anyway, so that’s where I am, ta-da!
This is also my first adult realist novel. Yes, I have sold out and gone literary. I really don’t know if I like the novel, though. At several points during its writing, I considered abandoning it. Writing it was not easy or particularly fun (as opposed to writing Enter Title Here, which was an amazing rush). It’s hard to say why this is. I might’ve been in a bad mood because the novel is bad. Or it might be that I perceived it as being bad because I was in a bad mood. Or perhaps my bad mood resulted in the novel being bad, which only put me into a worse mood.
In any case, my mood picked up hugely about two weeks ago, and I raced through the last third of the novel, which I actually feel alright about.
Not sure where this one will go, but I am glad I finished it and even if it turned out to be bad, I imagine that I learned a lot from it. Finishing a novel is cool, but what’s even cooler is the thought that this is just the kind of thing that I do nowadays.