I did something this morning that I have been telling myself I wanted to do for nearly my entire life.
I finished writing a story. Not just any story, but a full-length novel. 92 thousand words. 25 chapters. It has a beginning, a middle and an end. (In that order and everything).
Working Title: The Lamplighter and the Magician’s Daughter
Of course, at this stage it is just a first draft, which means that there is still a huge amount of work to be done. I’m telling you about it now because it is such a hugely momentous achievement for me. I’ve started so many novel-length stories, and until this moment I hadn’t finished a single one of them.
The difference this time was painfully simple. I sat down, and I wrote. No excuses. I got up in the morning, grabbed a coffee and nearly every day for the last four months, I wrote something – anything. Some of it isn’t too bad, some of it needs a serious overhaul. But I wrote it anyway.
No matter what happens with it, I am so very thrilled to finally know for sure that I had the dedication and commitment to get this far. If I’ve done it once, I know I can do it again.
Now I’m going to go back and fully build the world like I should have done from the beginning. I’m going to take what I know about the world and solidify it into rules, give it shape and direction. I understand now, why this should have been done before I even began, or at least long before the story was beginning to coalesce into a real and concrete thing.
I’m going to edit and tweak, I’m going to look under the hood and make sure all the hoses are connected to where they are supposed to go, and everything is lubricated just right. When I’ve polished it to as high a sheen as I can, I’ll bring it out into the light and take a really good look at it, and we will see where we go from there.
Even if this story ends up as nothing more than a tale that I can share with my family and friends, I’m ok with that. It has been a journey and just being along for the ride has been enough for me.