I started a novel close to three years ago. I wrote an additional fifty-thousand words of it for NaNoWriMo 2015. One of my goals for January was to finish the draft, no matter how terrible. And then a surprising thing happened.
I did it.
Clocking in at 85,115 words, a couple of weeks ago I finished a really rough, really terrible, draft. The word choices are often questionable, the characters change names two or three times in some cases, and I think I need a lesson in how time usually works. The important part about finishing it though is this: I finished it. I wrote all those words in to kind of sentences in something that resembles english, with a beginning, middle and end to the entire shebang. Holy crap.
I had originally been intending on putting the manuscript away for a bit now that its done, let it marinate, get some emotional distance (there are some major themes in the story that relate to coming to terms with abuse, so that got pretty intense while I was writing it), but as I’ve tried to do that over the last couple of weeks, I’ve started finding myself filling in plot holes and problems in my head while I’m at work, or in the shower, or having tea, and now I’m considering pulling it up and starting work on the editing/rewriting process as kind of a side to my other things that I have coming up.
If you’ve ever finished off a manuscript like this, what do you think? Let it marinade? Go ahead and jump in? I am very interested in hearing opinions.