Friday, I finished the second draft of The Curling Novel. It wasn't all that much different from the first draft, but I'd fixed everything I then knew to fix and it was time for my first run of betas.
So there are people reading my book. If you've ever hit send on a manuscript, you know how scary that feels. I remember being told it would never get better. For me, though, it actually has. Maybe it's because this is such an early draft. It's okay if people don't love it. Particularly if they're able to tell me why they don't love it. Which isn't to say that I don't want them to enjoy the book, I do. But if they don't, the world doesn't end, I just have stuff to work on. If they send me twenty pages of “Why I hate Andy's curling novel” then I'll have twenty pages worth of inspiration for revising.
The initial responses have been positive. None of the reviews have been too detailed yet but I already have a few ideas for things to alter in the next draft thanks to them and I have hopes I'll have some more to play with soon. It's exciting.
While waiting for my feedback to come in, I started plotting a new story. It's about park rats. (The kind who play on snow, not on concrete. Not that I have anything against the skate park type, I'm just a terrain park person. :) And it's about Jane Austen's PERSUASION.
So... Not going back to paranormal, at least not yet. And no curling this time. But staying with people who play in the cold and with Austen.
Yesterday, I wrote the first chapter of The Park Rat Novel. I hadn't meant to. I was supposed to be waiting and plotting and working out how the themes of PERSUASION translate to modern high school kids. But the main character's voice started going on and on in my head and she wouldn't shut up, so I had to type.
I think The Curling Novel proved that I don't have to be as fast and obsessive as I'd taught myself to be in the past. I can finish something in a reasonable time frame without sprinting to get it out in two weeks. And that's what I'm going to try to do with my park rats. I'm not sure how well my new MC's going to play with that idea, but we'll see.