Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.
— A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
Wow… hitting 100 pages has been an amazing three-year journey for me and my novel. I really never thought I would get past 50 pages (I remember when I believed that 50 pages=a lot of writing… that was a long time ago, now!). Even though my novel STILL isn’t past the 50,000 word mark, I know I’m getting there. I’ve been using page breaks in between my chapters, just to keep it organized… my doc is turning into a really big file, actually.
Whenever I open it, I have to wait one to two minutes before I can actually even start scrolling down to where I need to go (usually the end, unless I’ve realized there is some all-important error I ABSOLUTELY MUST fix at this moment before My Novel Is Doomed To The Swamps Of Horribleness… unsurprisingly, this hasn’t happened to me yet). If I need to go all the way down the end, I have to wait from one to three minutes, depending on how slow my computer would like to work today (on some good days, I’ve gotten the load time down to 30 seconds… but it’s still awful when I have this ITCH with this REALLY GOOD LINE and I want to add it to my novel, etc.), which is not fun.
But this is a second draft, after all. I have lead a lot of people to believe I am working on the first draft of that novel, and that is technically also true. Two years ago, in April 2012, when I got the idea for this novel, I wrote an original version, called The Lion, which I never finished, but definitely passed over 30,000 words. The manuscript sort of spiraled out of control after the first two pages, and it kind of left behind the idea that I really loved about this story.
Also, it was TOTALLY written seat-of-the-pants NaNoWriMo style (it was originally a script for ScriptFrenzy after all…. a really weird script with just narration, kind of like a radio talk show), so I had no time to stop and think about the plot. And for me, dropping out of something is completely out of the question. I am a very ambitious and goal-oriented person, and dropping out of something is kind of completely crazy mad. Even if my script ended up being a total flop, I HAD TO REACH 35 YWP SCRIPT PAGES.
So I simply restarted the entire story: new everything, except some old characters, more fleshed-out than before.
I don’t know what else to say, except for address that quote up at the top of my blog post. I’ll type it up again, because I love it:
“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”
~ A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
First of all, I LOVED the Winnie-the-Pooh stories. I watched Pooh bear cartoons, and, for some reason, I thought Piglet was a girl because he was pink. My favorite character, though, was Eeyore. I’m not quite sure why, but on Christmas Eve yesterday (wow, it was really yesterday!) we were discussing Christmas from when I was a small child, the year I got an Eeyore stuffed animal as a Christmas gift. I still have that Eeyore somewhere, and I still don’t know why I liked him so much. But now, he shows us perseverance and his character reveals what true friends do for you, even if you’re depressed bored and angry. He was also funny at times.
It’s a great reminder of how great things may take time, even if you’re a fan of Writing a Novel in A Month, like me. So don’t be afraid to write your novel and take time. I still have about 50 pages. It may not be long, but at least it’ll be hopefully at least 100 pages (well, 101, I started a new chapter and spilled over just now). Just don’t take too long.
Merry Christmas, Although, Since All the Gifts Are Unwrapped, It Doesn’t Feel Like It Anymore,