Wednesday 18 August 2010

Delaying tactics

I have been doing a lot of blogging recently, and there is a very good reason for this. I am avoiding the WIP.

I have reached the end. Nearly. And I am terrified that the ending (and the whole book, come to that)isn't going to come up to scratch. The more I think about it, the more worried I become, so I sign in and blog, and that is writing and feels like work (although of course it's not), and it takes my mind off the novel. I've written nearly 92,000 words (I was aiming for 90,000-95,000), which is a considerable investment of work and thought and, yes, love. Because like most (all?) of us, I love writing. But supposing it's no good? Supposing it joins the Failed Novel in obsurity? Will I be able to face this with fortitude, or will I just crumple and give up?

The other worry is, once it's finished, what shall I DO? Of course, there's plenty to do, but as all writing addicts know, if you haven't got something on the go, life loses much of its pleasure (and I, for one, become very difficult to live with). I'm not one of those writers who can start a new book straight away, although I'd love to be able to, so it's going to leave a big gap in my life.

Of course, there's still a lot of editing to do, but the fact remains; most of the writing is done. And I'm really, really not looking forward to it all being over.


  1. I feel for you Frances, that terror of the thing being finished and not measuring up is horrible, i know! I hope to finish mine tomorrow and am hoping that, when I read it through in a week or so, after a brief holiday, that I won't think it's all tosh. But I'm already writing the next one in my head!

  2. Thanks, Alis. I envy you having something new in your head - mine seems, like Winnie the Pooh's, to be full of pale grey fluff at the moment, but I guess that's old age and new babies.

    Talking of which, I'm off to see him again (109 miles, but worth it!). Have a lovely break.

  3. Thanks, Frances. A level results out today, by the way and R's results were more than satisfactory!! I hope I'll be able to say the same about the book when it's done

  4. It's a frightening moment, but also an exciting one. What if it's *better* than you think?

    I try very hard to cultivate a frame of mind where my satisfaction is generated from what I think the book is like, rather than what happens to it afterwards.

    I feel for you wondering what to do next. I too find it very difficult to move from one project to another. But you've probably still got months of editing ahead, so no need to say adieu just yet!

    Well done to you and Alis for getting there!

  5. Aalis - I'm so glad the A level results were so good. Congrats to the clever son!

    Hi Tim. I shall try to take your sensible advice...

  6. Thanks Frances. WIP finished yesterday - phew. Now have ten days or so off to visit people (eg parents) before term and the re-writes start...