#WW The Emotions of Finishing a Novel

6 Apr

Recently, I finished the first draft of a novel. Granted, any novelist already knows that means the novel isn’t truly finished, but alas, finishing that first draft is the first hurdle to novel freedom. There are a lot of emotions that come along with that moment. Even if it is the tenth novel you’ve written, it never gets old. These were my emotions.

When You Hit The Last Chapter

Oh, god. I’m about to complete this thing. Like, this thing is actually going to be done. Not done, done. But done enough for now-done. For at least a month done. Then, I have to edit. Wait. Focus. You’re not done yet. Finish before you worry about editing.

200

When You Hit The Last Sentence

And then all the characters were dead. Just kidding. *Deletes* (Insert heart-warming or gut-wrenching completion or cliffhanger.) Yep. That was sad. I’m a genius. (A genius who’s going to probably rewrite this line a billion and one times during the editing process.)

200-7

When You Type The End

I’m delighted!

It’s complete!

All my hard work and here I am!

200-13

When It Actually Hits You

Wait. It’s complete. Now what?

Panic. (Of course.)

200-9

When You Focus

Time to make phone calls. Time to round up the team. Time to tell them we’re past the first hurdle and now it’s full speed ahead. Everyone is excited, but most likely to remind you to take a moment to breathe. This clearly means it’s time to celebrate.

200-1

When You Celebrate

Dance party! This is best done to the soundtrack you wrote the novel to. Because, let’s be honest, you’re not going to want to listen to those songs for a LONG time. You might as well enjoy them now.

200-4

 When You Calm Down

Okay. You’re not much of a dancer anyway (even though you did write that killer dance scene in the book you just finished). Let’s go do something more reasonable. Something less dangerous. Like eat potatoes. Or order a reward for your accomplishment. A new coffee mug will do.

200-15

And Finally…When You Can Take a Break…Before You Work Again

We all know this is just a single step in a very complicated, often grueling (but also fun) process in an equally as long and complicated journey. Rewrites and edits and beta readers and query letters and publishers and formatters and cover artists all come into play. There are a million things to do and probably a million more ideas already itching to come out of your fingertips and onto the keyboard. But don’t forget to enjoy these little moments. Take a step back and reward yourself for all of your hard work. And, when you return, burn up that keyboard again. The next novel is waiting.

~SAT

#AuthorinaCoffeeShop Episode 14 starts this Thursday at 7 PM (CDT) via Twitter’s @AuthorSAT. What is #AuthorinaCoffeeShop? It’s just how it sounds. I sit in a coffee shop, people watch, and tweet out my writer thoughts, all while talking to you. I hope to see you there!

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11 Responses to “#WW The Emotions of Finishing a Novel”

  1. ravenandbeez April 6, 2016 at 2:46 am #

    I was reading to kill a mockingbird last night in the bathroom and I was LITERALLY acting like that cat in the first gif. Also, eating potatoes can be dangerous. I once choked on it and nearly died.

    • Shannon A Thompson April 6, 2016 at 2:47 am #

      That is a great novel! Funny how finishing a novel via reading or writing one can be the same. 😀
      ~SAT

  2. Lisa M. Gott April 6, 2016 at 9:32 am #

    Congratulations! Happy editing ;-D

  3. The Animation Commendation April 6, 2016 at 9:42 am #

    Congrats! I’m still trying to get off my lazy backside to write my first draft, lol!

  4. debyfredericks April 7, 2016 at 10:55 am #

    Fun with cat videos!

  5. theowllady April 9, 2016 at 7:51 pm #

    Reblogged this on theowlladyblog.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. April Ketchup | Shannon A Thompson - April 30, 2016

    […] 3. The Emotions of Finishing a Novel: I finished writing Take Me Yesterday this month! This sequel was a long time coming, but it was also my 10th book. 10th! So, I decided to write an article depicting all my crazy author emotions through cat gifs. What? I’m a catlady. I couldn’t help myself. […]

  2. When Your Writing Issue Is… | Shannon A Thompson - July 24, 2017

    […] an agent or a publisher to publish you or your book. (Oh, and write another book.) Related article: The Emotions of Finishing a Novel & How To Get A Literary […]

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