I sent Song to betas yesterday. That moment always makes me cringe, a feeling I usually counteract with a shot of chambourd or something equally sweet-tasting and nerve-calming, but since I’m not completely off the painkiller train the nerve-calming stuff is currently off limits.
What did I do then, you ask? Did I write a succinct yet compelling synopsis for the UF I’ve been thinking about for months, come up with a grabber of a title and furiously type up the first three chapters, which included a flawless hook and an instantly engaging, smart-ass-yet-secretly-vulnerable MC and her trusty and extremely hot male sidekick, then scribble out character bios and a point-by-point diagram of the plot in Excel, with copious notes and a 3-D color chart showing the arcs of the main story and all three subplots?
I reread the whole of Song.
Still doing that now, in fact. I can’t really tell you why. All I’m doing is torturing myself. Every little typo I missed before is leaping out at me now, and a small but fierce plot hole that hid in the bushes during One-Pass Fun just glommed onto my face and sucked my eyeballs out a minute ago.
Ok, I’m exaggerating that last part. I still have my eyeballs. But I really hate those little ambushing typos. The manuscript reads well, in fact, though I’ve bitten two nails to the quick thinking about the pacing. It is ready for betas: it’s ready for new eyes and new perspectives, people who haven’t lived with these characters for the past 7 months, people who don’t know a million little trivial pieces of backstory that would never make it into the plot anyway; people who aren’t in any way attached to this story or this particular herd of imaginary folk.
I’m just not ready to move on.
But that’s part of the job. I may not have made a penny yet on the job, but I still see it as one: 4 hours/day, 5-7 days/week, requires discipline and insight, planning and forethought and stubbornness, the ability to type x amount of words/hour, to “own the problem” (how I hate that phrase) and “stay ’till it’s done” (another corporate favorite), excellent oral and written communication skills and proficiency with word processing software. No standard benefits offered, pay commensurate with talent, persistence and some luck, but plenty of upward mobility.
[wow. sorry. excuse me while I disentangle myself from my day job. I swear, I could write ad copy in my sleep]
Anyway. All I actually meant to say there was, letting go of one WIP and moving onto the next one is kind of important. So, once the construction workers pounding on the roof outside my damn windows GO AWAY(argh), that’s what I plan to do.
And until that blissfully quiet moment arrives, I suppose I have no choice but to sit here skimming Song in my Google reader. I mean, what other option do I have left?