Monday, April 20, 2009

The week after

Two weeks ago I finished the first draft of my latest book. Unfortunately, that meant I hadn't actually finished anything. Finishing the draft is like the seventh inning stretch of a ball game. You stand up, stretch, sing a few bars of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game," then you sit down and get back to work. I always watch "The Matrix" when I finish the first draft. I don't know why. I did it once, and now it is my personal tradition. I took a couple of days off after my Matrix viewing. Since it was the weekend, that only seemed like the thing to do. I also went to an actual ball game, a Thursday afternoon Reds game during the first week of the season. That too is a tradition. Then it was back to work, back to page one of the manuscript, time to rewrite, revise, re-evaluate what it is I love about writing. I love to write. I'm not so wild about rewriting.
A couple of days ago, in between creating this blog and tweeting on Twitter about how much I do not like rewriting, I finished the final draft. The book, a collaborative work called, "Don't Just Survive It - Sing!" comes out some time next year. The person for whom I wrote it loved it, which makes me very, very happy. And the publisher loved it, and since the woman for whom I wrote it owns the publishing company, I had a pretty good idea they would. Now I can finally relax. The book is done. The deadline was stretched, but I delivered. Book twenty-three now moves from my "works in progress" to the "finished books" file folder on my MacBook's hard drive.
Now it is Monday. No deadline. No stress. And I'm not quite sure what to do with myself. I have a new book on which I will start working as soon as my partner signs his contract. In the meantime I am going through deadline withdrawal. I have this nagging sense that I need to rush to my office and buckle down, only to remember the book is finished. I think I will spend this week reading. Writers love to read. Then again, I may choose to sit on the couch, a little dog at my side, and do nothing at all. It is, after all, the week after a deadline. I always enter such weeks with high hopes of accomplishing so much, only to discover my brain has rebeled after being squeezed a little too hard for a little too long. My dog is about to fall asleep. I think I will join him.

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