Looking back over 2013 I realise that I've spent nearly ALL of it writing!
To sum up briefly -
After a small submission round of my second book at the beginning of the year, I started writing my third book in February.
I finished the first draft of that book in June but before I had the chance to revise it I was overwhelmed by a voice in my head that forced me to start writing my fourth book. (That may sound weird but hopefully other writers will understand!)
Last week, at the end of November I wrote the final word on the second draft of that same book. Hurrah!
After all that it's no wonder I feel exhausted. Drained even.
But I'm also slightly euphoric. Why? Because a year spent writing is a year well spent in my opinion.
And because the changes I've noticed not just in my writing but in myself are heartening.
I've FINALLY learned not to rush. Whoop!
I've discovered that many plot problems can be overcome by just letting them sit for a while. The answer will come. Eventually.
I've found there is a happy medium between planning and pantsing.
I know when something works and when it doesn't and have found the courage to rewrite as necessary.
I can take criticism and use it effectively and I can also ignore advice I don't agree with.
I've figured out that I really need the VOICE to spark the narrative. Not the other way around.
I know what works for me.
I have discovered the following ;
Writing makes me happy.
Writing is part of my life, not all of my life.
Spending half my life in a made up world is remarkable therapeutic.
The writing community is somewhere I feel happy and enjoy being. I am lucky to be part of the warm and welcoming community that is SCBWI BI and also to belong to a wonderful critique group that's been going for nearly two years.
Optimism is more fun than Pessimism.
Giving up is not an option.
So there we have it. My thoughts at the end of another writing year.
I'm hoping that the things I've learned will be enough to help me cope with the inevitable traumas of submitting in 2014. Fingers crossed people!!