Ten days later - and I'm done with "Counterpunch", which received a pretty good scrubbing in the meantime. I've cut the lazy writing, sharpened my structure, fixed some factual mistakes (these days, all writers have to do their own fact-checking anyway), and cut all the flourishes and self-indulgence that added nothing to the book.
Which now means I'm trashing my print-outs, my notes and re-shelf my books on boxing. Clean up my work area and thus clear my mind of the book and characters. And then I'll sit down in a corner, cradle my hurting brain and whimper softly. (Editing a book means you have to carry the whole thing in your head and remember everything, because nobody else will ever point out the small issues and mistakes, and nobody takes ownership of this, so, essentially, this final edit is very much the writer's obligation, and wow, but it's hard work.)
Editing, I've heard it said, is the punishment for writing.
But holding the book like that, and having done my research and my fact check, I have ideas for a sequel, possibly. There's some intriguing possibilities with the characters, and another character who can mess it all up.
However, it's all up in the sky right now. I'll need to clear my head now, do nothing writing-related for a couple days (I'm thinking I'll play "Gears of War" pts. 1 and 2 to celebrate the launch of "Gears of War 3" NEXT FRIDAY!!!), then do the sanity and typo check on two novels of two friends - both urgent, both great novels.
After that, I'll write my half of "Lion of Kent 2" (which involves a metric fuckton of research) for Carina Press (hopefully), and hope to close 2011 with that.
In terms of novels, I'll dedicate 2012 entirely to WWII - both novels need to get going again or I'll lose the characters, but the research is intimidating to say the least. Twelve months for two historical novels and around 50 books of research sound about right.
After all the books written this year, I'm looking forward to taking things down a notch. Writing novels in 6-8 weeks is completely insane. I simply can't do it. I dig in too deep, deal with pretty complex things and I can't do that in 6-8 weeks. I'll need some time to find my equilibrium, so I'd say 2012 will be a "slow" year, and I'll definitely try to do some travelling, too after staying at home in 2011.
So, yep. Mission Accomplished. Now relaxing.