This month is dedicated to getting the second draft of the young adult novel done and in to Penguin Books. Well, it was. I mean, it still is, but the pressure is off a bit.
I don’t have to submit the whole manuscript. (Whew!) I just have to submit a synopsis. I figure it’s going to take me two days to write a good synopsis and pitch letter. Of course, I can’t do that until I know exactly how the novel is going to go. Right now I have some substantial changes to make before I have that figured out.
The plan now is to spend until October 27th on the novel rewrite. If I don’t have it totally done by then, I will at least have it mostly done and I’ll know where I’m going. Then I’ll use the next two days to write a dazzling synopsis and a killer pitch letter that will knock the socks off the editors at Penguin. At least, I hope it will.
When I first sent this draft out to my readers, I posted about it in a forum I belong to. One of the other members said, “What do you mean, rewrite? I understand what a rewrite is, but why would you do it?”
Bless her little heart for her confidence in my abilities. The truth is, even this second draft is probably not the end of the process. Penguin says that they will contact a writer “if one of our editors wants to work with you on the manuscript”. This acknowledges what any writer worth her salt knows to be true; writing leads to rewriting and, probably, more rewriting. I could be on this project for a few months yet.
That’s fine with me. I’m enjoying it the world-building. I’m enjoying watching my characters develop and seeing them, occasionally, refuse to do what I planned. I’m thinking about another book set in the same world and perhaps touching some of the same characters. (Angie, stop snickering!)
Having the pressure off a bit means that I’m not restricted to flat food and a caffeine IV drip, that I get to see my husband and have sortofa social life, and that I can go on with my Mission Submission project, with a new goal of twenty-five sales by December 31st, 2010.
I’m still going to be working hard on this novel. There’s a lot to do – pieces to cut, to recast, to rewrite and to add. It’s achievable. When October 31st arrives, I will have made my goal of having a submission in to Penguin Books.
Damn, I’m starting to feel like a real writer!