It happened on Friday, September 2nd, 2005, at 3:21 PM at a corner table in the Starbucks on Bear Valley Road in Victorville, California. On the overhead sound system, one of two songs was playing — I’m not sure of the timing. It was either the Old 97s song “Salome,” or Marvin Gaye’s “Inner City Blues (Makes Me Wanna Holler).”
Either one’s fine, really.
I finished the first draft of my first novel.
It only took 570 days, start to finish, to write this complete edition of the story I started back in 1998, in the Sovereign Serials webzine. At 58,305 words, that’s a miserable 102 words per day, which is just horrible. The next one’s gotta be faster… I plan on making the next one my National Novel Writing Month project!
Can you believe I finished a fucking book?
Of course, I have to do an edit, and some fact-checking, and some clean up and tightening. I give myself a couple of weeks for that.
But it’s done. I’ve written a book.
It’s the first time I’ve ever finished something on this scale. Until now, they’ve all been in my head.
When I finished, sitting in the stupid Starbucks, I wanted to jump up and down, yell, scream, laugh, cry… knowing it’s done (it’s printing right now!) I want to all that stuff again, but it’s twelve thirty at night, so…
So I couldn’t go to bed without blogging this milestone. My book is done.
Self sabotage couldn’t win. Personal strife and artistic frustration and bad time management and Cursed Day Job couldn’t win. Pure fatigue couldn’t take me. And the story, bless those characters and their world, never grew tired. Never.
I wrote a novel.
How about that.