|Toasted Graham Latte|
Remember when I said I was breaking the rules for NaNoWriMo2015? Well, my one-month 50-hour novel editing challenge turned into 3 months and 52 hours. Finally, today, I have finished editing my novel.
This whole experience has been an amazing learning opportunity. Not only did I learn about the process of editing a novel - as well as the time and skill involved - but I also learned a lot about myself. Now that I am living in the U.S. again and working a regular 9-5, I'm finding new and different challenges that impact my writing.
Location, Location, Location
Having a 40-hour-a week computer job is not the only hiderance to my ability to write. Living within a short drive of many friends and family also takes time away from writing. While I was living in rural Japan, I had few social distractions to keep me from writing in the month of November. Here in Portland, where I live near 15 family members and about 20 friends, it's a completely different experience.
Cafes vs. Couches
I need to have a comfortable private space to be creative. Haven’t I learned this already? The fantasy of spending all day café hopping is really an illusion. In reality I can’t work at a café longer than 2 hours and if I don’t have a space where I can get into comfortable clothes and use the bathroom as many times as I want and take naps on the couch then I am not a productive writer/editor.
The Great Escape
I can be very productive on get-a-ways as long as I have a regimented schedule. Much like my writing retreat in Okayama on my first NaNo, taking a retreat to my partner's empty condo in Portland this December enabled me to edit for 8 hours in one day.
|Caramel Brulee Latte|
When I hit a point in the story where major plot revising is needed, it helps to take a break and come back to it. This happened twice. Once when I decided to re-write an old character who I had previously deleted back into the book. The second time when I wanted to majorly rework a couple scenes in the opening chapters.
Overall, I learned that I actually am capable of writing a novel. Start to finish. I can do it all. And now that I am looking at the finished product, I am pretty damn proud.
Editing my 117,000 word novel was not my only objective this winter: I was also on a quest to sample every holiday drink at Starbucks this season.
While overseas, I missed the delicious holiday lattes, but once I returned to the states I found that Starbucks drinks are just too damn sweet. Two years in Asia must have altered my senses. Now I'm completely grossed out my these syrupy American drinks. Oh well....
What an editor's schedule looks like:
|November||5||2||5:45-6:30, 7:20, ~8:35~9:10||7275|
|November||8||lots of writing||3||5:45-7:45||10822|
|November||15||lots of writing||2||6:00-7:00, 7:20-8:20||4487|
|December||26||8.5||8:25-9:25, 9:30-12:30, 1:15-2:30, 4:45-5:45, 9:20-11:35||26486|
|January||24||lots of writing||1||3:15-4:15||2374|