I’ve been ill, slugging away at the “final” draft of The Next Novel in bed.

Yes: slugging. I find this final stage of taking a comma out and putting it back in (and more, I admit) somewhat tedious. I’m simply transferring my scribbled edits to a computer file, and I never (ever!) do this without thinking: could I contract this out?

The answer is: no. There are always mysteries that only I can solve. And, in truth, it is a pleasure to be so far along in the writing process to be obsessing about commas.

But I didn’t come here to complain, rather to share was looks like an inspiring blog: Brain Pickingssent to me by a friend. Here’s a New York Times article on it. Cool. Tell me what you think.

And just so you know: I’m fully recovered. Every time I’m in the final stages of a novel I become convinced that I will die before it’s finished. Now, when that end-of-life conviction comes over me (and I wasn’t all that sick!), I think: Ah, almost there. 

How do you respond in the final stages?

[Illustration: “Cork,” from the wonderful blog BibliOdyssey. Chosen for its many layers, so much like the process of building a novel.]