I have been sitting here for 5 long minutes, listening to my happy song (above), wondering how to channel my feelings into a string of words that will translate my current emotions truthfully. But upon reflection, nothing ever will so here it is, as blunt as can be : I finished my novel!
Whoa. The single action of typing this down makes my heart swell. I mean… I have been working on this first draft for a year. It started off as an utterly different plot but slowly, I found my voice and shaped a story that, I will admit, I feel particularly proud of. I have jumped with joy at the discovery of an unexpected twist. I have stared at the blinking cursor for longer than I care to admit. I have traded sleep, quiet showers and meditative walks for impromptu plotting and character building. And although there are many more of those to come until it really is the end, I feel positive.
I remember when the idea of this novel sprung in my mind. It wasn’t like the other 4-5 novels I have started and never finished. The feeling was different. Somewhere inside of me, I knew I would see it through. I knew I was ready to commit to – dare I say – the biggest project of my life. Am I exaggerating? I can’t be sure. There is only one achievement that may steal first place and this is my bachelor’s degree.
A few months ago, I remember reading about the 5% rule on Kristen Lamb’s blog. In her post, boldly entitled “What Are The REAL Odds Of Being A Successful Author”, Kristen writes the following:
… of the hundreds of thousands, how many who start writing a book will actually FINISH a book? How many will be able to take their dream seriously enough to lay boundaries for friends and family and hold themselves to a self-imposed deadline?
I have meant to refer you to this post for months but I felt like I had to finish my novel first. Because now, I can say – I am part of this 5%. I made it into the elite team! I am only beginning my writing journey and I probably can’t even imagine where it will take me but I know this for sure, I finished what I started… kind of. I finished Draft 1. Because now, it is time for the editing to begin. Now, it is time to make this story whole.
And I couldn’t be more excited… (and a little more terrified).