And They Lived Happily Ever After…The End.

October 1, 2012

I’m just about there. Although I’ve finished my first draft, I haven’t typed the words “The End,” because I haven’t finished editing. I’m doing the final edits on my first book this week. It’s going off into the world, and I will put it out of my mind, while I start book number two. Okay, I can’t put it out of my mind. I’ll wait hopefully. I’ll worry and fret, almost as I do over my children that have spread their wings and gone out into the world, but I will try not to focus too much on where it is, or what it’s doing, as I start book number two.

I’ve learned so much while writing book number one. I’ve had great mentors. I’ve done workshops and classes. I’ve had epiphanies that have changed my work. I’m not the same writer that I was when I started book number one.

So, what will happen when I begin book two. How will my process change? I’m excited to find out.

Oh, I’m not ready to become a plotter. I love letting the characters tell the story themselves. I love sitting down each day to find out what will happen, just as I do when I read a book. I love hearing their voices in my head as my pen flies across the page, spilling the story in blue ink onto the wide-ruled pages of a spiral notebook. (You should know by now that I’m set in my ways…and yet…) I think I understand storytelling better now. I understand conflict. I see my characters differently. My POV is less scattered. And although I’m not a plotter, there’s more organization to my process.

After years of writing short, succinct, to the point as a non-fiction writer, I’ve learned how important each word is, but now, I’m not afraid to tell the whole story or to explore other stories within the book. I no longer withhold the subplots or other important characters.

How will book number two begin? Although I’ve been focusing on book one, book two has been swirling around in my brain, the characters voices whispering in my ear. I’m ready to find out.

If you’ve already written book one and are on to book two, three…or more, I’d love to know if you think your process has changed? If you have changed as a writer? If so, how? What made the differences? Who influenced you?

If you are working on book one right now, what have you learned that will change the way you write in book two? Do you have mentors that are influencing your writing?

Share your experiences please! I’m off to put the final touches on book one. I’ll be back though. I promise.

And they lived happily ever after…until she started book two.



7 Responses to “And They Lived Happily Ever After…The End.”

  1. wyngarden Says:

    I could have written this! I do have just a little more than you to do on #1. I want to re-write the last two chapters and do one more edit on the whole thing. And I work all day (non-fiction writer), so I don’t have much time (you may do so too). Anyway, it’ll take me more than a week to get there. although I’ve already typed “the end.”

    And I’ve learned so MUCH! Not to use dialog tags. Not to use adverbs. That tightening never hurts. You may replace those words, but it’ll be with better words. That the hero can get away with almost anything if he’s gorgeous, but not so much the heroine.Readers JUDGE her! That, just like in the classroom, you can write something so clearly you’re sure everyone will see it and some won’t.And much, much more.

    My second book is wanting to get started too. And I do plot, but I know I’ll plot better this time. Can’t wait to get #1 totally knocked out!

    Good luck to you. What genre do you write? This and the next book of mine are contemporary romance, but I want to try other genres as well, especially fantasy.


  2. taristhread Says:

    Myistic, I’m writing women’s fiction with romantic elements…or so I’m told! I too would like to write other genres, but book two and three will be the same. All have some 1920’s connections, but are not actually historical. I’d love to write historical romance though…it’s on my list!

    Keep us updated on your book! I’d love to hear where you are in the process!

  3. wyngarden Says:

    Humm. Sometimes I think mine might be something other than romance, really, but since I don’t have a local RWA or writer’s critique group, I’m not sure. That’s one reason I’m targeting agents rather than publishers. I need someone to tell me. Which are you going for?

    And my work has ties to the 1950s, but I’ve thought of going back further since my house was built in 1928 and Tulsa was an interesting place back in those days! Outlaws zooming through town and tunnels being built underneath downtown so Oil men wouldn’t be kidnapped and could move their money safely. I work on top of one of those tunnels in a building also built in 1928 that has a place for a blimp to tie up on top.

    I followed you on Twitter so maybe I’ll hear about it when you get a deal.

    • taristhread Says:

      Oooh, consider joining RWa, there are some great online chapters!! Am I following you back on twitte? If not send me a message and I’ll make sure that I follow you!!

      I’m sending to both agents and editors. I got to pitch both at the RWA Convention and had requests from both, so just crossing my fingers, and toes…and anything else I can cross!!@

      Feel free to e-mail me at…just be sure to put in the subject line that we talked at Fact to Fiction!!

  4. dylanhearn Says:

    For somebody who is only just starting the process, I both envy you and offer you my heartfelt congratulations. I can’t offer much in learnings as yet, I’m learning each day and often what I thought I’d learnt was right, turns out not to be on another day. I look forward to reading the comments from others with real interest.

    • taristhread Says:

      Dylan, I’ve learned that what one editor doesn’t like…another loves, what one published writer suggests I change, another published writer says “don’t touch it it’s perfect”. So I listen to every comment and critique, carefully consider it, then make a decision.

      I have a feeling as long as I write I’ll be learning!

  5. You ask some interesting questions, Tari. I’ve written six manuscripts. The first one took ten years of meandering. I next two I wrote in three months each, always pantsing, simply sitting down and letting the characters tell me what to do. (I never submitted those.) The third one, I wrote the first draft as a panster, but when I took a course on plotting, I decided to see how my story structure held up to the what I was learning. It sucked. LOL. Which explained the rejections. So for the next three manuscripts I tried my hand at plotting. It wasn’t the Holy Grail of writing, either. Only after working with an editor on edits that ultimately led to rejection did I realize even with plotting I can write one damn boring book. 😦 And so, I rewrote one of the six finished manuscripts to make it more exciting and conflict-ridden. We’ll see how that goes once I submit it soon.

    I guess what I learned from all this is that my process will vary from book to book and from year to year. Creation is a dynamic thing. 🙂


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