ROW80 Update (and now updated update)

I really thought I’d be jumping for joy, shouting and laughing and bouncing off the walls when this day finally rolled around.  Yes, I finished the first draft of my manuscript.  Just a little bit ago as a matter of fact.  Thanks to ROW80, I felt challenged to write the 32 scenes I wound up writing to finish the story, adding 8,965 words this week. Yes, some of the scenes are just bare bones.

Probably more than that, actually, because I’d typed in paragraphs where I wanted the scenes, and what I wanted in them, a couple of months ago.  And I deleted all of those as I completed each scene.  So technically I added over 10,000 words.  But given that I’d only committed to 2,500 in five days, I’m very happy with the numbers.

Not as happy as I thought I’d be though.  After adding the last scene, I skimmed through the ones that come after, through to the end of the book, and when I got to one specific part, a new vision played in my mind and I had to change it.

And as it unfolded in a new and unexpected way, it was so much more touching than it had been to begin with, that it made me cry.  I don’t think I’ll touch it when I start editing this week.

Anyway, now I’m finished with the first draft and I have to figure out how to set those editing goals.  Word count doesn’t seem like a good fit.  And depending on how much work I think each chapter needs, one a day might be too ambitious.


I guess my new goal is going to be this-

This week I’m just going to read the book and take notes.  No later than January 16th, I’ll start the editing.  Figuring seventeen days left in the month, and 102 scenes (if my count is right), I’ll aim for six a day the second time through.  And hope that all I’ll have to do is to polish it up in February.

Thanks to everyone for the encouragement.  It’s been a crazy week and I plan on offering some encouragement of my own this week.  🙂

And now because I’m still feeling a little ambivalent, I’m going to share with you one of my guilty pleasures.  My daughter introduced me to these YouTube videos about three years ago.   A couple of young kids lip syncing to a couple of songs I really like.  The first is one of their earliest endeavors and I just love the way they have trouble not cracking up.  The second shows their growth as amateur film makers.

***Looking at all the great goals everyone else has, I feel like the underachiever of the family.  So I’m adding two new goals to my editing goals.

1.  Get to pool at least 3 days a week.

2.  Write a more detailed outline, and more extensive profiles for my MC’s, on my other WIP.  Depending how early I complete it during this round of ROW80, I’ll adjust my goals accordingly.  If it’s toward the end, I’ll make finishing it my main goal for my second round.

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18 Responses to ROW80 Update (and now updated update)

  1. revolutionaryvj says:

    You are doing so great! Congrats on being so close to the end. Don’t forget to celebrate this major accomplishment!. I never thought about how hard it would be to set goals for editing. I think you’ve set a fine goal and I am so happy for you! The videos are adorable, proof that with hard work, practice, and time, we can all get better!

    Have a super week, and happy editing!

  2. Yay! You’re probably still in shock from finishing the first draft. The first paragraph and the first sentence–they’re always the hardest. You’re cruising on easy street now.


    • Thanks, Jenny. LOL…GMTA, I guess. I’ve been sitting here tonight reminding myself the hard part is over. The editing and revisions are a lot easier than the first draft.

      But then that little voice on my shoulder (the one I want to knock off and stomp on with steel-toed boots…starts whispering in my ear. She’s been pretty quiet for awhile though. Guess the baseball bat convinced her I really wanted her to shut up. My shoulder wishes I’d found a better way but…what can I say? Desperate times call for desperate measures. 🙂

  3. Shelly Immel says:

    Way to prove to yourself that you can do more than you thought possible! Tap those toes, then dance tomorrow!

    • Thanks, Shelly! How right you are. Except I think I always knew it was possible…I just didn’t want to finish it. Yes, weird, I know (but I never claimed to be normal!). 🙂

      Here’s hoping the dance comes into play tomorrow, lol. I feel like I’ve just run a mental marathon. Been dragging all day. Time for my swamp sludge pick-me-up. 🙂

  4. Woot woot – congrats Kristy!! That’s awesome to have a rough draft to work from. Sooo exciting!! And 10,000 words in a week – I am blown away and am inspired to rock it out even more. Here’s to you and more FAB weeks ahead!!!

    • Thanks, Natalie! (I think I’m sounding like a broken record) It is awesome. I had doubts I’d ever see the end of this, but I did. Now I just have something like102 scenes to edit. Help! LOL…nope. I’m getting it done. So hold on tight because I’m really going to start rocking things now. 🙂

  5. Thanks, Karen! Yeah….10,000 words. That really stunned me. I haven’t written like that in 3 1/2 years, and was afraid I might not ever be able to do it again. Now that I know I can, time to get busy and finish ALL of my projects, with the help of ROW80. LOL…that’s like 17 books, so I sure hope they’re around a long time! 🙂

  6. Yay! You did it Kristy! Congratulations! (I’m jumping up and down with Debra!)
    Wow, over 10,000 words in one week! That’s awesome. Take a deep breathe. Now let it go.
    You did fantastic! I’m going to following your footsteps! 🙂

  7. Debra Kristi says:

    Yay! Yay! Yay! Jumping up and down in a happy dance! That’s major, finishing the first draft. I can’t wait till I finish the first draft and can get into editing mode. Looking forward to watching your progress and seeing how you adjust your goals. Cheering you on from the sidelines. Go girl!

    • Thanks, Debra! I might consider joining you in the happy dance but feel a little wrung out today. In a good way. Maybe I’ll just do a happy toe tap and dance tomorrow, lol. 🙂

      You have some really good goals…you’ll be at the editing stage before you know it! Can’t wait to see what you think of that. 🙂

  8. enjoy the moment of typing “the End”. it’s awesome. You’ve done something so few others have ever accomplished. time off to read thru and then editing next week is a good idea. how about a goal of time rather than words or pages? that way you’d be busy working and still meeting a plan?

    • Thanks, Louise! I don’t know why, but I’m always kind of surprised when I finish writing a book. Maybe because it seems like such a monumental task in the beginning. But it’s also one of the greatest feelings in the world.

      Good suggestion about making the goal time-related. But this time I have to be a lot more strict with myself. I have a deadline I can’t miss. LOL…teach me to back myself into a corner! 🙂

  9. asraidevin says:

    yay! Congrats on the first draft finish. take at least a moment to celebrate it before you focus on editing.

    The draft stage is the end of one process and the start of a new one. Once I got to were I was writing worthwhile (plotted, conflicted) stories I found I enjoyed editing myself. As you said in the above reply comment, it’s a mourning period as you are done playing with your characters, now you have to whip them into shape and once you are ready to share them, it’s really sad. I have characters I miss.

    I can’t wait to show the videos to my daughter tomorrow.She’s going to love them. Cute boys too.

    • Thanks, Asrai! I am going to celebrate (leaving for brunch in a bit), and then I’m going to print off a copy for my proofreader and get it dropped off this afternoon. Just need a reaction…hopefully a good one…before I do anything else with it. She didn’t like it all when I gave her what I had done before. Of course it was missing 32 scenes so it was a little hard to follow (if you weren’t me).

      I do actually enjoy the editing part. Not so much the couple of times through just to check for typos. Again. By then I’ve read each of my books half a dozen times in a short period of time and am ready to distance myself from them.

      But you’re right. With this one it was definitely a mourning period last night. Not like you would mourn for someone you love, of course, but I was a little bummed out by the time I went to bed. Fortunately that’s over this morning (mostly), and I’m ready to print a copy for me, too.

      Hope your daughter enjoys the videos. They’ve done a couple I wouldn’t let a kid watch, but mostly they’re just fun and I’ve followed their growth with interest. So did a lot of other people. Before something happened to their YouTube channel they had literally millions of views. 🙂

  10. Thanks, Breeana! I am thrilled. But also a little sad. I think this may be the best book I’ll ever write. If not, it’s certainly the one I’ve spent the most time working on. Countless hours in the state and local libraries, a records and newspaper offices (and I mean LOTS of hours), weeks and weeks of research. Agonizing over everything, and hating some of the things I had to do in the story. But it’s fact-based fiction and it had to be realistic.

    So it’s just kind of a weird night for me. On one hand I can’t wait to see the finished product. On the other, I’m going to miss working on it. 🙂

  11. Yay! I’m so excited for you, Kristy! 🙂 Finishing that rough draft is major! It is hard to set measurable editing goals. You just never know what’s going to happen once you start. But I know you will get there! Time now for *happy dancing*

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