I have no idea how many words I wrote this month on the first draft of Steel Legacy, but I know I wrote the most important two:
Trust me, I’m just as shocked as you are.
As shown in the picture above, the final total for what is currently a total mess is 120,560 words. Which means I need to cut about 30,560 words along with some other significant revisions. This is less traumatic than it sounds, because I’ve already identified plenty of places where scenes can be streamlined and certain issues are repetitive. That’s the problem with writing a single work over the course of 2 years, sometimes with months between adding to it — it’s easy to forget when you’ve already covered certain ground.
But while it may have taken me 2 years and I know I have to cut it down, this is officially my longest work to date. (The original draft of Steel Time came to about 115k words, and I easily cut 30k from that one.) I’m pretty freaking proud of myself.
So, what changed? Why was I finally able to get my act together and finish when you’ve been seeing me say the same thing for a year at this point? Probably a combination of things. Taking a more active role (instead of just reacting) in addressing my mental health needs. Looking critically at where certain habits were tripping me up and intentionally changing them. For example, I know I said I wasn’t going to go anywhere in August. Instead, I ran away from home to visit my friends in Atlanta again, where I knew the change in location and schedule would make it easier to put myself into a more productive mindset.
Also, I was bribed with a baby capybara.
- I did it this time! I kept my promise to my beta reader and finished the first draft of Steel Legacy. This meant that I got to keep a promise to myself and reward myself by supporting three of my favorite authors on Patreon (Kate Hawthorne, Onley James, and Iris Foxglove).
- As mentioned above, I did not stay home. I had a fantastic week in Georgia and successfully took my longest solo road trip.
- Five of the book reviews posted last month were for books I was lucky enough to be an advanced reviewer for. I’ve already got 5 more on the schedule for September. I love my job.
- Keep my other two “you finally finished the freaking book” promises to myself! I get to build my Diagon Alley LEGO set and read the next two installments in The Old Guard graphic novel series. Look for blog posts on both of those soon.
- Keep the second half of my promise to my beta reader! I’d like to complete a few revision passes on Steel Legacy before I send it to him by the end of the month so that he’s not reading a complete train wreck (just a bit of a traffic jam). Feel free to follow my progress on Twitter for regular updates.
- The spouse and I are headed back to FanX in Salt Lake City at the end of this month. I’ll post my schedule for that soon. Let me know if I’ll see you there!
In Case You Missed It
On the Internet
- Panelist for Con-Tinual: The Con That Never Ends fandom discussion on The Beginner’s Guide to Fan Fiction
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