I started Curse of the Black Swan when I was living in my Mom’s attic (no, that wasn’t last year). That was about…ohhh, nine years ago (I’m getting old, it seems). The main character, Nathaniel, was actually a creation from a screenplay of mine called Apache Snow (cool title, bad story).
Anyways, I ported him over to a PBEM (play by Email) we had called Haven (a very cool thing…lasted for about a year)…
I wrote a background character sketch to see what would happen — Nathaniel had to steal five crates of DragonRoot from a thieves guild. That expanded into a novel that I finished sometime around 2000…and I was done.
I edited. Brian was the first reader. He thought Nathaniel whined too much. So I toned down the ‘whining’. He wanted to see more killing. Added more killing.
The women were next: Kari, my sister Kim, and my Mom. I had them read it in sequence, so that each suggestion could be fixed (if necessary) then given to the next person.
Went through the line. I was DONE.
Then, it was accepted for publication by Gardenia. That was back in 2004. I even have a journal entry here about how I was editing away…
You see, I had a bad feeling about Gardenia. Kari remembers how I didn’t sign the contract for 3 months. My head was saying NO but my heart was saying yes. I gave in. Gave in to their editing demands (which I fought against…then finally convinced myself they were right).
Well, Gardenia went belly-up. At the time, it sucked. But once I was over the initial grief, I knew it was for the best. I knew that Gardenia didn’t deserve my book.
Anyways, fast forward to the present…ten years later, and I gave it to Bev and Eileen for critiquing. Well, all those edits I did for Gardenia? Eileen hated them. And I didn’t blame her. They were awful.
So back I went, changing them, spending HOURS with Curse. So I’m now editing the edits. And tonight, I finished. Which means I’m done. No more.
Ten years later, Curse of the Black Swan (formerly Nathaniel) is finished. Tomorrow, it goes out to Daw.
Kari, I know! We’ll have a BONFIRE in your backyard!!!
You know, poetic justice would see me reading it again. You know, full circle and all?
Are we inviting the firemen again to celebrate?
So when the acceptance letter arrives in the mail in 2 weeks where are we going to celebrate??
Is that same sense of ‘what now’ like when work is complete on the house?
You know the renovating projects I guess really are a metaphor for the writing projects, aren’t they?