I woke at 4:00 this morning, and went to work. I broke for one hour to have breakfast and dress, then carried on until 1:00, pushing until I’d read/edited the outstanding pages. Soon I went back to work again, revising, making changes. It’s going on 9:00 pm and I know I must stop.
Kenneth Atchitey wrote a wonderfully practical book on writing titled The Writer’s Time: Making the Time to Write. It was one of the first books I read on writing, and I heed his lessons still.
Today I was remembering what he had to say about “End Time”:
End Time is characterized by high energy flow and pressure to finish … Lock yourself up if necessary, turn off the phone, leave home, anything to allow End Time its way once you’re sure its way can lead to the end. … The rule then is: If you’re wondering whether you’re experiencing End Time, you’re not. True End Time displaces all other thoughts.
I’m forcing myself to call it a night, but I’ll be back again early, I know, determined to finish this draft (the 6th), and send it off to my editor in a few days.
The really good news is that I’m pleased with it. The novel is starting to flower, and I like that. There will be changes, no doubt — I’m haunted by a suspicion that there are critical scenes missing. There will be drafts 7 and 8 to come, and perhaps even a 9th, but it’s beginning to fill out, connect. As Robert Olen Butler would say, it thrumms.
Good night! It’s time for me to thrumm to sleep.
Update (the next day): woke at 3:00 am, to work at 4:00. Worked like a demon & sent the MS before 1:00 pm. Happy Sunday to me! Very pleased. I’d promised it to my editor by the end of this month, and delivered it ahead of schedule.
Missing scenes that you haven’t conceived yet? Or scenes that you’ve cut from the novel, but whose importance you’re now reconsidering?
In any case, congratulations on the finished draft!
Hi Jordan — missing scenes I’ve not conceived yet. BTW, this is likely the draft I’ll send out to readers. I’ll be in touch.
I always pay attention to your suggestions. Thanks for this one as well, as discipline is true key to success. Your hours are very awesome….the main thing is that you are getting to a place of self satisfaction in your drafts. That is progress.
Thanks, Janet! I’m up at 4:00 again! Today or tomorrow, I hope to finish.