Five Days

At last night’s writing meeting, I realized how disappointed I am in myself. I was going to write February in there, but that felt like too much of a fib. Spectacular external hard drive failure aside, it is me that’s not made the best of use of my time.

(Wah-wah-wah.)

I have five days left to make good on the month, and I intend to do so. Which means homework.

I’ve taken what’s left of the manuscript and divided it up into five portions, about thirty pages each, give or take, with the chapters whole. Each day I have my assigned reading, and beyond that, I’m assembling a list of free-writing topics (character and setting) that I’ll tackle one at a time until they’re done.

March 1st I start the rewriting. The actual rewriting. No more fuzzy thinking, puttering around. I know what I want my new first scene to be and I am going to write that first. Once I get rolling, I’ll be fine. This second draft will take my lean first draft and both rebuild and expand it. The storyline will be deeper, the details better. Then the third draft will be the smoothing out and line editing.

How long this will take, I have no idea. I only know that this read-thru has taken too long as it is. I’m pushing aside all other projects — no more writing exercises, no more noodling. I will try to keep my two polished short stories in submission circulation, but otherwise it’s all WIP, all the time.

(In fact, I got a story back that needs to find a new market. It wasn’t a rejection — on the contrary, it had been held for the second round but the magazine has sadly ceased publication. I still feel really good about that story, so tomorrow I am going to try to find a home for it again.)

Meanwhile, time to get to work.

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