Well, today (the 10th) has passed me by.  And no, the novel is not done.  It’s close, but not quite there.  Oops.

However, I think I know what factors have gone into my total fail to finish on time (mind you, I have some leeway, I set my deadline a little ahead of the actual doomsday because I always try to factor in life things).

First and foremost, a lack of focus.  I’ve actually written quite a few words in the last month (need to update my progress meters, I’ll get around to it), but on multiple projects instead of just focusing down one project at a time.  I switched which novel I wanted to do and lost about a week of productivity before I realized that I didn’t have the time I needed to write that novel.  I could really use that week back (if I’d stayed with the current novel, I’d be done!).  So I’ve learned my lesson there about multiple projects.

Second, writing in a wholly new genre involves a learning curve and the work definitely goes more slowly.  I’ve been working very hard on getting a thriller pace and character milieu and all the other things that come with writing a book like this.  It’s been slower going and a lot of second-guessing and pep talks to myself these last few months.  Didn’t plan on that. But hey, now I know.

Third, I’m sick.  First was migraines, then they left a nasty cold in their wake.  It sucks. Writing while my head is a fog from drugs or stuffiness or fever is lame.  I’m pushing through because I have to, but it ain’t fun and I’m making mistakes in the manuscript.  Caught one today where I’d changed a character’s name mid-book.  Yay for find/replace.

So yeah, /end whine.  I will finish this novel sometime this week.  And then my Q4 entry for WotF which I haven’t even really thought much about.  Then… well, I’ll tackle that once I hit Sept 30th.  Until then, the novel and my Q4 entry are my focus.  That’s what is up with me.  Getting toward the wire, time to work.

(In happy news, I got the proof for my Contrary Magazine story, and that was pretty cool. It’ll be up soon!)

4 Responses to “Deadline!”

  1. Ben Godby

    Props for the perseverance. That’s awesome that you’re trying to branch out genres; I’ve got an action-thriller planned, but its modern military setting is daunting for a pacifistic, militarily unknowledgeable fellow like myself. That’s why I usually stick to fantasy: I don’t have to know a whole lot!

    And hey, I’ve got a question for you, because I know you write novels and you submit to editors and possibly agents. Do you have any tips for query-writing? Every website I visit says different things! Any tips or suggestions would be rewarded with more e-props, possibly shout-outs, kind words, etc…

    Good luck with the rest of your novel!


    • izanobu

      My only advice for writing queries is to keep it short and professional. And attend one of Dean Wesley Smith’s novel workshops if you are able 🙂

      But basically my query format goes like this:
      My name and address (I center mine at top to give stationary feel)
      Editor’s name
      Editor’s address

      Dear (Editor’s name),

      I have a completed novel titled X. Sentence or two about why I’m qualified to write this/and or the novel’s theme/etc.

      Paragraph telling what novel is about (think back cover blurb basically)

      A sentence listing relevant credits. A sentence listing what I’ve enclosed (usually a synopsis and sample pages). Thank you for your time and consideration.


      If doing a paper query, sign it with a pen. If doing email query, no attachments ever, just past the first few pages and the synopsis below the query in the body of the email.

      hope that helps!

  2. Ben Godby

    Thanks–that does help! How many pages do you send, though? Five? Ten? Thirty?


    • izanobu

      Depends. Paper subs, generally no more than 3 chapters or about 20-30 pages… For e-subs I usually find a good stopping place 8-10 pages in and send those.

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