Wednesday, May 31, 2017

I Finished My First Draft?!?!



On May 13th, at 7:33 p.m, I finished the first draft of my novel. 

Some of you may already be aware of this; if so, I apologize for the redundancy. But I am so, so excited. I would have been shouting the news from the rooftops on social media, but I was trying to keep it a secret so that I could surprise a family member, and I didn't want them to accidentally find out ahead of time. Thus, things have been kind of silent over here. It wasn't the easiest secret to keep! 

I'm not one to share a ton of details about my stories online, but I will say this much- I'm pretty freaking proud of it. This is the same novel that I wrote 51k of for NaNo, the same novel that I've been plotting and writing for the past year and a half. It's my brainchild, my baby. And despite its many, many, many many, many, many, MANY flaws and imperfections and mistakes, I love it with a passion. 

It's important to me. It's about prejudice and overcoming adversity and family and fear and grief and finding a joy that you never thought you could find. It's a story of hope. I didn't know that when I started writing it, but it really is a story of hope. In some ways, I feel like this novel wrote itself. I didn't plan a lot of it, it just kind of..happened. But I really like the way that it turned out. I've learned so much in writing this book. About writing, about people, about myself. And I'm hopeful. Despite all of my fears and anxiety and pessimism, I have hope. Maybe this book taught me that too.

I've currently given the novel to a few select people to get some feedback I'm not freaking out what do you mean why would I be freaking out, and once I get their responses, I'm going to jump into the glorious pit of editing. I did read it through once before giving it out, just to fix any huge glaring errors, and I'm already itching to keep editing it. I want to make it better, to make it something that I can really be proud of. Even though I'm not currently working on it, it's in my head constantly- I'm still coming up with new ideas and things that I want to add or take away. I think it's going to be a while before this project is finished. It's going to be done right.

 I also have a new plot bunny jumping around in my brain, begging for attention, so I'm trying to slowly piece together some ideas for that as well. Abbie has gotten me obsessed with making Pinterest boards for new projects, and it's definitely working. I'm getting excited for this one. For now, though, I'm leaving it on the back burner. Its time will come.

-----

And now, because I know that I've given you basically no details about the actual novel, I'll share a couple of fun facts before I head back to the agony of waiting for betas to finish.

// This was the first full novel that I've ever finished.

// The only music that I could listen to while writing was Ben Rector. For some reason, everything else drove me crazy, but Ben Rector music got me in the writing zone. Which is strange, because a lot of the songs don't fit the feel of my novel at all. Either way, I'm endlessly grateful to Mary Shelley for introducing me to his music. 

// The novel takes place on a small island somewhere in the New England/Nova Scotia area. I haven't entirely pinpointed it yet. 

// I wrote some of the most important early scenes in the novel when I was fourteen, before I'd even started plotting. I didn't start actually plotting/writing until the fall of my sophomore year, when I was fifteen. 

// The final word count was over 104K. I have created a monster.

// Whenever someone asks me what my novel is about, I say that it's a murder mystery that's not a murder mystery. Good luck to anyone who tries to figure out what the heck that means. 

// The plot really didn't fall into place until this past November, when I took part in NaNoWriMo. I'd scrapped a lot of what I'd originally written, and NaNo is when everything really came together. 

// My favorite character is only used in one chapter. 

// I discovered that I work best through word wars. Maybe it's just my insanely competitive nature, but when I'm warring, I can write an average of 800 words in fifteen minutes. Major shoutout to my twitter friend Gabriela, as well as my real-life friend, C, for the tons and tons of word wars!

// I think that my favorite part of this novel is the fact that the characters keep you guessing. They all develop a lot throughout the story, and you never really know what to expect from them. 

-----

I don't know exactly what's next for this novel, aside from the impending editing that has to be done. But I am very excited. ♥

-----

So, tell me- how's the writing world coming for you? Any fun projects going on? I want to hear all about them! 





54 comments:

  1. CONGRATS GIRLY!!!! I'm so insanely proud of you!! I recently finished a draft as well, and so I can relate to that rush of HOLY COW I'M DONE!! Except it's never REALLY done, there's always editing x)
    <33 CONGRATS!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THANK YOU SO MUCH!! :') Congrats on finishing your draft! That's so exciting!!

      Ah, the perfectionism of being a writer. XD I'm so excited to get into editing- there's definitely a lot of it to be done!

      THANK YOU, LOVE!! <3

      Delete
  2. I'M SO HAPPY THAT YOU FINISHED YOUR FIRST DRAFT! I remember use just talking about noveling in general for three hours straight even though it was midnight where you're at. xD So proud and pumped for you! Go get yourself some Ben and Jerry's because treating yourself is like IMPORTANT. xD

    xoxo Abigail Lennah

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THANK YOU!!!!! Oh my goodness, that was such a fantastic conversation. xD We definitely need to have another soon. ;) I shall go get my hands on that ice cream right now!

      You're the best, Abby <3

      Delete
  3. ACK! I've been meaning to go on your blog for FOREVER, but I'm a terrible blog reader. But then I randomly go on and see this! Once again, CONGRATULATIONS! I AM SO PROUD OF YOU. You wrote a monster and that's fantastic! XD I'm so happy to have been able to word war with you! If you ever need anymore, feel free to let me know.

    I've been taking a break from my CampNaNo novel. This might be one of my worst first drafts ever. *hides* I will finish it, soon, hopefully. But I did start writing a fanfic for an manga/anime that I love. It's been so fun and inspiring. I might just post it on Wattpad at some point.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Eep, THANK YOU SO MUCH GABRIELA! I couldn't have done it without you and your fantastic wars XD I'll definitely hit you up for some more sometime soon- I love having you as a writing buddy!

      Sometimes taking a break and writing something else helps SO much. You should definitely post it on Wattpad- I'd love to read it! And I'm sure that when you go back to the NaNo draft, you'll sail right through it. :)

      Thank you so much for everything! <3

      Delete
  4. I am so freaking proud of you!!! ❤️ And I'm so glad Ben Rector helped with your writing! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :') Thank you so much, Mary Shelley!!!! <3

      Delete
  5. OHHHH CONGRATS, GIRL! THAT IS SOOOO EXCITING! <3<3<3

    ReplyDelete
  6. CONGRATS!!! THIS IS SO EXCITING!!!

    ReplyDelete
  7. OHHHHHHH YAYYYYY GRACE!!! I AM JUMPING UP AND DOWN FOR YOU! I remember how it felt to have finished the first draft of my novel...it's a tremendous feeling. Here's to yours being published and being read my me sometime in the future! It sounds brilliant!

    -T. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EEP THANK YOU SO MUCH, TANE!! :') You are the absolute sweetest! This comment made me smile so much:) You are so lovely! xxx

      Delete
  8. AKSVLDNE SOO EXCITING! Yay!!! I love Ben Rector :)

    Hailey
    www.haileyhudson.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. *flails for ten years*

      Isn't Ben Rector the best? :)

      Delete
  9. CONGRATULATIONS THAT'S AWESOME! There is no better feeling. <3
    I can't wait to read your novel, and I wish you the best of luck with the rest of the process!
    xx,
    -Anna
    www.lethologicablog.weebly.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. YESS YOU GO. *high fives* Finishing a first novel is SO EXCITING. :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. EEP THANKS JONATHAN! *high fives* :D

      Delete
  11. AHH CONGRATS GRACE ANNE!! (Also lowkey really want to read XD)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. THANK YOU SO MUCH HANNE!! XD Hopefully someday you will!!

      Delete
  12. Ahhhh, congratulations!! Finishing the first draft is always a huge deal. From now on, you're just changing up what you already have - you don't have to go through the brain-wringing process of pulling an entire novel out of thin air anymore. This summer, I hope to finish either my spy novella or sorcery novel. And I'm just about done with the first draft of my steampunk pirate story! Best of luck with editing <3

    Ellie | On the Other Side of Reality

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Ellie! I'm super excited to get into editing and tweak it to its final form. Best of luck on your projects!!

      Delete
  13. GO GIRL GO!!!! I'm so happy for you and intrigued about this novel! Great job!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Yay! That is so exciting. Seriously, it's a big deal to finish the first draft.

    ~ Pip

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Pip! I really am so excited:)

      Delete
  15. YOU FREAKING SLAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I CANNOT

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. :''''''') I CANNOT WITH YOU EITHER GAH <3

      Delete
  16. Maxene O&#39;ReilleyJune 2, 2017 at 7:31 PM

    Yay for you girl! That's awesome (I now look upon you with reverence. ;)) You motivated me to keep writing my book!!!!! Go you Grace Anne!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Eep, you're the sweetest, Maxene! Go and conquer that book! I believe in you!

      Delete
  17. AHHH YAY! Congrats! Finishing a novel must have such a surreal feeling attached to it. I'm still trekking through my own novel, which is clocking up to be a monster as well... ;)

    Ah, I think I know what 'murder mystery that's not a murder mystery' means. Someone was supposedly murdered but then it turns out they actually weren't? Hmmm. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Surreal is really the only way that it can be described. Aren't massive novels fun? xD

      Hmm, I suppose you'll just have to wait and see! ;)

      Delete
  18. Wow, congratulations girl! Good on you! :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. GRACE ANNE, CONGRATULATIONS! You've done something that a LOT of people will never do. You've started out on a project, you've chased that idea, you've written it, and you have FINISHED A NOVEL. I hope you know, deep, deep in your bones what a HUGE accomplishment that is. Knowing that will help fuel you for all the editing and whatnot. It sounds like an awesome story - I can't wait to find out what "a murder mystery that isn't a murder mystery" is!

    LOVE YOU GIRL AND CONGRATS!!!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh my goodness, thank you so, so much, Kate. I admire you so much as a writer, and this means so much. I'm already pumped to jump into the editing process!

      I LOVE YOU SO MUCH *hugs* <3

      Delete
  20. I've already told you this, but IM SO PROUD OF YOU!!! Definitely keep us posted on novel news- we're so excited to hear about your book!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Abby :') I definitely will!

      Delete
  21. It's so awesome that you've finished the first draft of your first novel!! (I'm still working on mine ;) ) Your story sounds fascinating - the characters sound lovely and complicated, and I think more stories should be about hope! And it's great you're still full of ideas and enthusiasm for the story - and looking forward to editing! I hope we can hear more details about your story one day. :)

    Jem Jones

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much, Jem! I hope to share more details very soon:) Best of luck on your novel! I'm sure that it will be amazing. <3

      Delete
  22. EEEeeek!! CONGRATS GRACE!!!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Yay! THIS IS SUCH AN ACCOMPLISHMENT. Seriously.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Congratulations! I hope to finish mine before the month of June ends; I'm sure it's such a good feeling! (:

    Laura at flowersinmybasket.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Ooh, good luck! *sends you motivational chocolate*

      Delete
  25. I'm so so proud of you! Congrats. <3

    ReplyDelete

♥ Comments brighten my day- I'd love to chat ♥