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message 1: by James (new)

James (signal20) | 41 comments Mod
I finished the first draft of my current project. It has taken me about a year and a half to get to this point. That's not a horrible amount of time, but the story was done in my head three months into it.
Here is my advice, and it's not mine originally, set aside at least one hour of everyday to sit and write. Even better would be to make it the same time everyday. This will train your brain to get right into the creative thought process.
That being said, I started out doing this, but life gets in the way sometimes. I know if I would have stuck with the schedule it wouldn't have taken so long and that's what I'll do in the future.
Hope my ramblings help with anyone who feels like they get stuck.

Best wishes,

message 2: by A.J. (new)

A.J. (ajash) | 3 comments Congrats James! I'm on the last chapter of my current novel, and I agree with you on both counts: I try to write everyday and sometimes life takes over. That's the way it goes...

message 3: by Ilyn (last edited Dec 24, 2008 05:17PM) (new)

Ilyn Ross (ilyn_ross) Congratulations and good fortune on your project.

To everyone: Happy Holidays! All the best for 2009!

message 4: by Janice (new)

Janice (janicevici) | 2 comments Thanks James. I'm on my 16th edit of my memoir. I have an agent. And I need a schedule! I'd be further along the way. Any suggestions?

Sweetest holidays to everyone!

message 5: by James (new)

James (signal20) | 41 comments Mod
Thank you all!

Janice, my advice would be sometimes it's best to just let go. I give mine three rounds and then ship them off for others to critique. If I get good stuff in response then I'll tweak it a little, but otherwise I have to let my children leave home to grow up. After that it's time to shop them around.

Best of luck to you all and happy writing.

message 6: by M.L. (new)

M.L. Bushman | 144 comments I agree with James, 3 times around and ship it off to others for their opinion. If I receive the same criticism about a certain spot from two out of three beta readers, I might change it. Might. But then I'm done with it.

16 edits? Janice, you have to let go, move on, move forward. Start a new book. That's a sure cure for the edit after edit treadmill.

message 7: by Janice (new)

Janice (janicevici) | 2 comments Thanks so so much for your comments! There have been many times I've thought the same thing. It took me eight months to find an amazing agent who just got one of his projects in the New York Times Book Review - full page! Anyhow, he acted as my mentor and I even took part in his master's writing class. At first he had me work on structure, so I worked on short stories in class. Then he felt I was ready to workshop my book and so I did.

One woman has worked on the same book for ten years! Leading publishers were interested, wrote her pages of support, but ultimately rejected her manuscript. She came to my agent and is now reworking her entire book. I think I wasn't ready as a writer. It took me a while to immerse myself in my book, all over again. I just didn't want to return. But it must go out, and my agent sees it as an erotic "Eat, Love, Pray" work.

And I know that after this edit, Sam will guide me through one final round. That will make 3 edits with my agent before he shops the book. And I will celebrate! From what I gather, five years on a book is quite usual. Mine is a bit more.

This is amazing for me! Thanks for your time and comments. Writing can be lonely.

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