Yes, it’s March, and yes this is technically my first WIP post of the year. Luckily, no one missed much as I’ve been working on this last line edit for book 3 in the TGIB series for…oh…three months now. I don’t know what it’s like for other writers, but there is no stage of my writing process quite as treacherous as that final line edit.
I’ve gotten really good at not editing as I go, simply for the sake of finishing. If I read each draft the way I do the final one, I’d never get anything done. But once it’s time for me to strap on my editor hat for that final line edit, it’s like I get sucked into a black hole. I’ll glance at the clock and realize that I just spent half an hour on one paragraph or that an entire day has gone by and I’ve only completed one chapter. It’s tedious and heart wrenching but it’s also necessary. I just wish I could find a more streamlined way of tackling it, or better yet, maybe the universe could just add a few more hours in the day. Once this is finished, which I pray will be in the next few weeks, I will no doubt emerge looking like a zombie, probably smelling like one too. But who has time to bathe when there are words to be sliced and sentences to be diced?
Once book 3 in the series is finished, and it WILL be finished this month, I will move on to the fourth and final book in the series, which has been patiently waiting for my attention since…oh, jesus, November. I plan on taking things at a slower pace with this novel because I really want to get it right. That means it probably won’t be done until the end of the year. But the good news is I’ll be alternating drafts with my contemporary romance novel that’s also been shelved for far too long and then…once all that is done I will finally be able to start something new. It’s been an entire year since I started a new project. For the past twelve months I’ve either been editing or picking up where I left off on abandoned drafts. By the time I start book #9 (yes, NINE!) it’ll likely have been two years since I’ve started something new. And I can’t freaking wait.
This past Friday I celebrated the release of The Boy In Her Dreams and while I was able to upload that novel a month early, making it available for pre-order, these last two months of finalizing book three in the series are going to have me cutting it dangerously close. I still have my fingers crossed for a December 31st publication date but it will require laser focus and absolutely NO unexpected setbacks. So, yeah, not a very solid plan but like I said, I still have hope. I was heads down all October long trying to get the third draft of this novel finished and as of today at 2:00PM I only have thirty pages left to edit!!!! I would be jumping for joy right now if I didn’t already know that those last thirty pages are absolutely terrible and probably need to be re-written from scratch. I’m giving myself a Sunday night deadline and then I’ll dive straight into the fourth draft since I’ve already been passing along chapters to my beta reader as I go along.
Book 3 is probably going to be my main focus right up until December 31st but as soon as the new year hits, it’s going to be all about crafting the proper farewell to this series. Book 4 is a monster and as of now the first draft is still sitting at about 50K. Hopefully I’ll be able to spend the entire month of January on getting a good solid draft and then I’m just going to keep chipping away at revisions for as long as it takes. I don’t want to set a deadline for myself right now, even a tentative one, because I really just want to focus on making this story great. I’ve never written a series before, and certainly never a finale like this, and even though I have no idea what kind of pressure I may get from readers or if this series will even attract any readers at all, I want to be totally conscious and committed to finishing this story the right way and not the fast way.
Since I’m having to push back finishing the first draft for book four, my NA contemporary romance is still on the back burner as well but I hope to return to it sometime this spring. More HUGE NEWS, after a relentless campaign, Amazon has finally price-matched The Girl In Between, which is currently FREE at all major online retailers! Check out my BOOK page for more info on links to where you can download your copy! As for the blog tour, so far everyone’s posts have been going up without a hitch and the series has been getting some stellar reviews. It took a lot of time and effort to put everything together but as more sales and reviews start to trickle in I’m beginning to see the fruits of my labor and it’s just such an incredible feeling! Some more MAJOR NEWS…I daydreamed in my previous WIP Wednesday about someday only having to work one job instead of two and I am thrilled to say that day has finally come! There are just so many wonderful things in motion right now and I’m so incredibly grateful for not only these recent opportunities but for the amazing lessons in patience and perseverance I learned when I thought they’d never come.
The Girl In Between is OFFICIALLY LIVE!!!! Yes, book one is done and out in the big scary world, finally ready to be read! In all the commotion of making TGIB ready for pre-order and converting review copies and contacting book bloggers I accidentally forgot to upload the manuscript to Barnes & Noble but since their nookpress editor is so ridiculously easy to use I got the story uploaded yesterday and it is now available online as well as at Amazon and, temporarily, Smashwords. I started writing this novel way back in April of 2013 and to know that I never have to tweak another sentence from it is such a relief, not to mention I’m pretty darn proud of it and can’t wait for the first reviews to start trickling in.
Book two has been copy-edited, formatted, and will soon be available for pre-order! Have I mentioned before how much I love the new Amazon pre-order option? Because I do. It’s so convenient and I love that even though book two won’t go live until the end of October, I can go ahead and get it uploaded and out of my way so I can spend this ENTIRE month focused on book three. There are a few last minute things I want to look over, mostly pertaining to the blurb, but once that’s finalized in the next few weeks I will be revealing the cover, along with pre-order links, and Teaser Tuesday will resume with some of my favorite snippets from book two!
Book three is in much the same place as it was the last time I checked in. September was not the game changer I’d hoped it would be and I actually ended up taking a week off to recoup from the past seven months of feeling like crap. I came back from that break feeling a lot better but I didn’t properly anticipate how much time promo and blog tour stuff would really take and ended up spending most of the month sending out emails, begging people to review my book. I still have so much more to do now that people are starting to respond and bloggers are sending over interview questions or requesting blog posts, but despite the kick-off to the blog tour slowly approaching, I’m making a commitment that October is going to be all about finishing book three. If all goes well, I’ll finish my current round of revisions in the next couple of weeks and then finish the next round by the end of the month, possibly running into early November. Then I’ll send those edits to my FINAL beta reader and hopefully have the final draft ready to go in December. I say hopefully though because if the past few months have taught me anything it’s that you can’t plan for the unexpected and that working sixty hours a week warrants a little R&R every now and then.
Book four remains untouched but just like I’m devoting October to book three, I plan on devoting the last two months of the year to finishing the first draft of this novel.
Once that’s done and I’ve collapsed face first in a vat of something warm and hopefully made of chocolate, I will finally return to the real world. No, not the actual real world, I mean I’ll return to my shelved contemporary novel and maybe by then I’ll only be working one job instead of two and there will actually be people out there who are anxiously anticipating reading it.