Friday, December 16, 2011

My WIP is Not a Backup Plan

I decided to postpone/combine my weekly blog post with Friday Favorites this week. One, because it's relevant, and two, because between the baby's birthday and subsequent ear infection, my hands have been a bit full.

Now, I've been reading a lot of blogs lately talking about the waiting game. Maybe they've been this prevalent in the blogosphere all along and I'm just now noticing. Anyway, I'm there now, and reading a huge amount of advice about how to deal.

1. Take comfort in numbers without publicly accusing agents of taking unprecedented joy in torturing you.
2. Cry if you need to.
3. Rediscover love of writing through working on a new book. (To be fair, all three posts say that, but this one pushed it for me.)

I keep reading, "write a new book," but here's the problem. I'm treating my current WIP like a backup. It's close enough to the end that I can see the finished product, but I'm getting frustrated with the fact that it's not what I envision yet. I just want to finish it and send it out there, even though I know that's months (at best) from happening, not weeks. Most especially, I don't want to be caught "back at square one," where I've got no offer, no material under consideration, and no queries out. As if that would somehow prove that writing my last novel was a completely pointless endeavor.

So I'm taking "start a new book" more literally.

Current WIP was a NaNo novel in its first form. I rewrote it almost completely, but I knew I wanted the ending to be very similar. So today I'm yanking out the NaNo ending, slapping it on, and telling myself, "There, you see? You finished that draft. Now you are authorly-obligated to ignore its existence for two weeks before you come back to fix it. Now you may work on something new."

I have a new novel that I thought I might do for NaNo 2011, and I'm now very glad I didn't. It's got less than 1000 words and I've haven't a clue where the plot is going, and I love it. I need to fall back in love with writing again. Merry Christmas, me. I give you the gift of forgetting queries exist.

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