It’s a strange thing; last week, I finished writing the novel that I’ve been working on for several months.
Despite my elation, I’ve been overcome by an unexpected feeling of emptiness. I’ve finished my book and I’m completely lost. What do I do now?
Sure, there is plenty of editing to do, not to mention the possibility of submissions. But revising the book you’ve been working on is a totally different beast to actually writing it.
Writing can be tough, but nothing beats that rush when you’re caught up in this tale you’ve created, hammering the keyboard trying to keep up with the flow of words. Editing just doesn’t offer that same joy.
And as an unpublished writer, without an agent or a deadline to keep me on track, I find it easy to slip into apathy. My manuscript can sit untouched for months, as I struggle to make sense of it.
It can be difficult to explain the process between completing that first draft and reaching publication to someone who doesn’t write. They don’t always understand the amount of work involved in polishing a manuscript and making it sing.
But it’s a process that you need to go through; if you want to be published, you can’t write all the time and ignore the other stuff.
The story I developed in this book has been with me for a long time, so to have it out in the world, taking on a life of its own, is an odd feeling. It doesn’t feel as much a part of me; it’s not trapped inside, struggling to take shape.
With this novel, I’ve rediscovered my passion for writing. I want to keep on, creating something new, but now I’m stuck in that awkward space in between stories.
And this time I don’t have my next idea, ready and waiting. I’m void and lacking that spark.
I need another project…