I asked my partner to print the first three chapters of my novel today because I want to edit and submit them to the Richell Prize for Emerging Writers (along with a synopsis etc.). He bound them to make it feel special. And it really does, you know. To have those words in print and in my hands to touch and look at; it really does feel special.
It’s been nearly two years since I wrote these first chapters. I can’t believe it’s been so long. And I still haven’t got to the end. But something changed in me today, when I held my story. It didn’t feel such a huge task to finish. I’ve come so far, and I know I can do it. There are many days I think I can’t — believe me.
Daniel is reading these chapters tonight. We said originally that he wouldn’t read it until it was finished, but I’ve changed my mind. I need his input before I submit them. I need to make sure they’re the best they can be.
I will read them after, and decide if his points are valid. I already had a sneaky look, of course. It reads really well, I think. There are many things I will tweak but I’m actually quite pleased. I surprised myself. I thought I’d be more critical, more catastrophic, more ‘oh my god, it’s crap.’
But it’s not crap. It’s quite good, in fact 🙂
My current editing job for my own home-based business, Elephant Edits, is formatting songs and paintings for a client’s poetry book, preparing it for print in the Lulu marketplace and other distribution sites. It’s been an eye opener. It certainly isn’t straight forward. But nevertheless, the whole process is very accessible. Self-publishing has some major advantages.
But I cannot seem to let go of my desire to be traditionally published: get ‘discovered’, mentored, snapped up by a publisher, become rich, famous… (I’m going too far, hehe). I’m not sure why. Especially when self publishing is so rewarding (and financially too). I mean, even a homemade bound copy feels good.
But I guess I don’t let go of dreams that easily.
Tomorrow, if I get five minutes, I’ll research how to write a synopsis and a chapter outline. If anyone has any good resources, please let me know. Then I’ll work like a bastard to meet the deadline for submission. The novel doesn’t need to be finished, to be submitted for this prize, but I’d like to at least have my final chapters bedded down in an outline.
And hopefully, just maybe, I might win! And have a dream come true while I’m at it 🙂