I had a most excellent day today; I finished the re-write of the ending. It’s been a long time coming. How long? I’ve lost track. Please don’t count and tell me because it would harsh my buzz. I’ll just say, “long enough, bordering on too long,” and move on.
As far as moving on goes, the plan is simple; edit and spell check. Repeat. Then, attack agents.
The last time I wrote the ending, I was rushing to get it over with. I was tired of the story and just wanted to head on to phase two. Having some distance from it, I cans see that now. This time, though, I studied the ending and wrote numerous pages of illegible ideas on how to wrap it up. I made index cards and charts. I thought about who had what power and how they could use it. With help from my writing partner, ‘J’ (who is a master of all things fantasy and won’t let me get away with pulling a rabbit — no matter how magical — out of my ass to resolve plot issues), I fine-tuned it even more. And I think I’ve come upon the winning contestant.
My plan is to have the first round of submissions out to agents by the end of May — so I don’t turn another year older without being able to say I’ve finished (and I mean finished) this book (not including the slew of revisions I’ll have to face once I’m accepted. But, that’s a different, distant angst).
I’m now eying the Writer’s Digest short story competition, thinking I might conjure up a little something to give myself a break here and there while editing. Entries are due in mid-May and there’s a $3,000 grand prize along with promised meetings with editors or agents. Not too shabby. And it’s open to genre writers, which is a rarity. The word count is 4,000 words maximum, which equals roughly sixteen pages. That’s a chapter. A sneeze of an effort for a seasoned scribe with a tendency towards wordiness. Minutia, in fact.
You know what would be good? If all of the dark writers out there submitted something. We could saturate their pool with fantasy, horror and paranormal romance and give the vanilla crowd a run for their money.
But, that’s a concern for tomorrow. For the moment, though, I’m going to lean back from my keyboard with the satisfied sigh of one who’s gnawed their way through the eighty-six ounce steak, and enjoy my high.