I know I’ve been saying it for months. “Oh, I’m so close to finishing. Oh, I’m working so hard, honest. I haven’t been looking at lolcats all day. I didn’t decide to pack up my life and move house just so I could have an excuse to ignore my manuscript for a couple of weeks. Really. I’ve been writing. I promise.”
But guess what, guys? The joke’s on you. Because I have been writing. In drips and dribbles, fits and starts, but those words kept moving from my brain to the page. And now, slightly less than a year after I first started, I have a completed draft of The Spoil of Zanuth-Karun.
That’s right. Completed. Finished. Whole. All 191,367 words of it.
Don’t worry, I’m cringing at that number, too. I think it’s an ambitious story, with a lot of characters that weave in and out, rely on each other and betray each other in unexpected ways. It’s a big book about a big empire and the cataclysm that brought an entire world to its knees, so it’s not going to be a quick and fluffy beach vacation read. Nonetheless, there’s a significant amount of trimming to do, and I’m looking forward to getting it under some semblance of control.
But I am faced with a conundrum. You see, the first session of Camp NaNoWriMo has been moved to April this year, and I’d like to be able to participate. I have a fun idea for a more light-hearted, seafaring fantasy adventure, and part of me thinks that it’s best to take a break from The Spoil to get some perspective before I go back to edit it. I think a little distance makes me a better editor, and helps me read the work with fresh eyes and a more objective red pen.
The other part of me is aware that I tentatively promised a release date in April, and while there’s no hope of sticking to that, I should try to get it to market as soon as possible. If I work through the coming month, I could likely have it ready for print by the end of May (assuming no major distractions). Otherwise, we’re looking at June or possibly early July.
So I put it to you, loyal readers: what would you have me do? I can’t promise that taking my time will deliver a better product, but it seems a pretty likely scenario. And yet I know some of you have been quite anxiously awaiting this installment of the saga, and I hate to disappoint.
Leave a comment and let me know what you think. I am putting my life in your hands – or at getting brownie points for asking, even if I end up ignoring all your advice when I decide I don’t like it.