Goals and achievements is the theme for this blog hop. Jacqueline Hopper suggested we write about “what a writer goes through to make the goal of writing a book and finishing it.” Last year, I wrote several posts about my journey getting Fools Gold ready and having it published. (It was released in December 2013.) My goals for 2014 are to repeat the process for the rest of my Gold Rush series! Fools Gold was the first, and Prism Book Group contracted for four more books. I’ve written a manuscript for each, but I need to do edits and revisions. So I have my work cut out for me in 2014.
The prequel, the novella Worth Her Weight in Gold (set in Juneau in 1886) is due to be released on March 7. Bev Haynes will be my editor for this book. She has the manuscript now and will be sending the editing notes soon. We need to have the final draft to our editor-in-chief Joan Alley by mid-February. So I know I’ll be busy with that process pretty shortly. I was impressed with my first book on how collaborative the editing process is, how much the editors helped me make it a better book. So I am excited to have that experience with this book as well.
After that, there are three more novels in the series, set in: 1900 Nome, 1906 Fairbanks, and 1916 Kantishna (near today’s Denali National Park). Their tentative release dates are in June, September, and December of this year. I know I’ll be pretty busy with editing and revising in 2014.
What does that look like for me on a daily basis? While the editor is doing her part of it, I am free to focus on writing new stuff (currently a novel set in 1942) and getting out there on blogs, Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, etc. to hang out with people and promote Fools Gold and myself as an author. Once I get my editing notes, I cut back on all of that and work on the manuscript up for revision, doing my best to fix errors, smooth out the bumpy parts, and whatever else the editor finds for me to do. That can take me from a few days to a couple weeks, depending on where we are in the process. My standard routine is creative writing in the morning, business writing in the afternoon. But if I have a tight deadline, everything “extra” in my life gets set aside–non-required writing put on hold, appointments and meetings rescheduled, time with friends put off–until the draft is sent back on time. Then it’s lather-rinse-repeat until we are all satisfied with the final product. Last time, I think we had five rounds of edits. We’ll see what it takes this time; I’ve been told by veteran authors that every book is a little different. I’ll be able to tell you more once we get going on this one.
Writing a book is a lot of work. Taking it through the process is even more work. But I wouldn’t trade it for anything. The dedication and patience is well worth it when you hold that book in your hands and people tell you how much they enjoy reading it!