Thursday, June 19, 2014

Writing Full-Time Journey. So far...

Two years ago this month, I left my mega-demanding, time-suck job to write full time. What a curious, intriguing journey this has been.

In the first few few months (June, July, and August 2012), I drafted a developmentally flawed version of the first series book. The book contained too many character POVs; a lack of clear goals over the arc of the first book; a need for more action and showing, not telling; and too low stakes for the characters and the story. (Thank you, Cathy Yardley for your game-changing feedback!)

So, in October and November 2012, I redrafted a tighter, more cohesive version of Book #1. December 2102 into February 2012 for Book #2, then on to Book #3 through March 2012. Book #4's draft extended through April, with May and June 2012 for the drafting of Book #5.

Because I lightning drafted (ultra fast drafting, a process I would definitely NOT recommend), the next year (June 2013 until present) was spent fleshing out, pacing, and polishing all five books. (Not lightning drafting, I wrote a 1/4 of a book in another genre in April 2014 in 10 days, so an actual solid, fleshed-out draft can be created in less time than it takes to perform the extensive revisions required by the fast draft technique.)

In the meantime, I had a fairly serious health issue arise in October 2012, and even with lots of doctors visits and treatments, natural medicine alternatives, etc., the situation did not resolve until June 2014 (boy, am I grateful that it did!).

So, overall, despite health issues that slowed me down for a year and a half of that time, the timing of the books completion, from start to finish (minus the first three months I was off track with the first first draft), totals out to 4-1/2 months per book. [Approximately 2 to months or so to draft, and 2+ months for the revision. (Thanks, Kat Duncan, for your continued coaching and mentorship.)]

For now, my goals moving forward, for 2014 & 2015 include:
  • 5-Book Series published this fall.
  • Trilogy (another genre) published in late winter.
  • 2nd Series in first genre started.
  • 2nd Trilogy in second genre started.
Yep, because of the brain fog, fatigue, and the amount of muscle and joint pain I suffered, the last two years have been a challenge.

Would I do it again? I would and will (without the health symptoms, please).

Why wouldn't I?

I had worked excessive hours and made a great deal of money for the company, while getting paid very little and being appreciated even less, so now I'm working myself. There's something about working long hours for myself, that encourages,

Will it work out? I'm writing and I have my business plan. And I'm writing. One book at a time.

Today, I am continuing on to reach my goals.

Year three of writing books for a living should quite productive and major interesting.

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