Wrapping Up Summer Writing

As we head toward the end of a crazy summer, there’s so much going on (baby #5?! homeschooling?!). Here’s an update:

This hasn’t been a “normal” year for anyone, by any means. And while I initially envisioned a year of immense productivity and big projects, it turned out the projects I ended up doing were quite different.

When Life Has Other Plans

This year, I started out with a giant writing agenda. First and foremost, I was going to crush it with platform, focusing on growing my Instagram and Twitter presence. Second, I started blogging a modern rom-com that I absolutely loved, a huge departure from my normal genre. What’s more, I planned on recording audio versions of each chapter I posted–something that pushed me to learn more about that particular medium. And thirdly, I was going to finally get that podcast about being a mom writer off the ground.

And then? Life stepped in. I found out I was expecting baby #5. While I was thrilled, I hadn’t exactly planned of doing another round of pregnancy this year (which is always miserable for me). Then, my querying for my work-in-progress didn’t go as I hoped. I had a ton of requests but also lots of rejection (though, some revision requests, which was good).

Without mentioning the virus that then came in to take the wind out of everyone’s sails–you all know what happened next. The one thing I’ve learned from being a mom of lots of littles is that you have to be really flexible when making plans. That helped soften the blow of my ideas getting crushed.

So what happened?

What I Did Instead

“If you’ve been writing for a while, you probably know that Murphy’s Law in writing means that anything think you’re done writing–you definitely aren’t.”
As I almost immediately started my pregnancy with hyperemesis gravidarum (extreme morning sickness, which I’ve had each time), I let go of the blog book and my social media plans. It hurt to do it, but I also knew I couldn’t attempt to be a functional mother while being so sick with all that on my plate. I took a break from writing, let the round of queries I’d sent out settle and then, when I started feeling less sick, started to sort through the rubble.

A Revision I Never Planned

I’ve said it so many times before: “this is the last time I edit this thing!” But if you’ve been writing for a while, you probably know that Murphy’s Law in writing means that anything think you’re done writing–you definitely aren’t.

Based on some of the notes I had received, I started another revision. Then I decided I really wanted to hire a professional to make sure things were working well. I selected C.S. Lakin and was completely blown away by her insight (she’s fabulous and worth every penny). So I started rewriting. And rewriting. And rewriting. And when I finally finished my rewrite in the end of June, I was so happy with how far things had come. Except, I had over-written, by a lot. So I started chopping. And chopping. And chopping.

Finally, a few days ago, when I had tightened and reworded and cut as much as possible (without cutting chapters and having to rework structure) I decided, I’m done. With pandemic worries still going on, I’m going to be homeschooling my 5 and 6 year old children in the next couple of weeks. A couple weeks after that, I’ll be giving birth and then needing to take care of a newborn. I’m already really uncomfortable, in a lot of pain from various third trimester issues, and I’ve given this draft every ounce of my creative energy, blood, sweat, and tears.

So now it’s time to focus a bit more of shopping my manuscript, my family, and connecting with you! As I head toward fall, I’m excited for what lies ahead…but also ready to move onto the next chapter. Enjoy those last summer days!