And the work has only just begun…
The novel that I wrote (which I forced myself to write) on my Substack, The Mysterious Disappearance of Marsha Boden, is going to be published by a publishing house via the traditional route (rather than self-publishing or Indie publishing), and I am over the moon.
It all began when I desperately wanted to finish a novel. I have started several over the years but soon became so confused with characters, setting, plot, pace, etc. that I gave up. Then, very scarily, I decided to write a novel in installments, two chapters a week, posting on Wednesdays and Saturdays on Rosy’s Ramblings. It worked because there was no way that I was going to let my subscribers down (both free and paid.)
I started with the germ of an idea. A woman from a small village disappears. That was it. I sat at my laptop and unwittingly discovered (thankfully) that I am an intuitive pantser type of writer. (Stephen King uses this method) whereas other authors like J K Rowling (known as a plotter), plots and plans every step of the way. You can read all about how I discovered what type of writer I am here. You can tell by the GIF that pops up at the top of the link just how excited I was, (still am!)
Writing the novel is the fun part, the best bit, the most enjoyable pastime in the world — for me, anyway. I can sit for hours at my desk and let my imagination run wild while my fingers skip across the keys and magically, a story unfolds on the screen. Of course, it’s not that easy but that is what I do in the most simplistic of terms.
After the words are on the screen, the editing, polishing, shaping and creating the story, rather like an artist sculpting a piece of art from clay, begins. You start with the basic shape and then keep working until you have honed your work to as near to perfection as you are comfortable with. Just like a painter who constantly tweaks and shades and colours their artwork. Is it ever finished? Do we ever reach the stage when we are one hundred per cent happy with our work? Probably not, but in trying to reach perfectionism we must allow for flaws because we, as humans are flawed, just as the characters in our novels are. And that’s what makes them so authentic.