First Draft of Library Lost: Done!

Yesterday came that magical moment when I wrote the ending line of Library Lost. Somehow, it is both exciting and a let-down to finish a novel. Wonderful, after all that work, to come to the end, but I felt restless, and I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. Fortunately,  plenty of gardening chores await, and I spent a couple of hours removing leaves from one of the beds out front.

I posted the Library Lost news on my Facebook page, and one of the sweetest responses I got was from an acquaintance who lived in central Maine but who has just moved to the Southwest. She wrote that Maya and the Book of Everything traveled with her across country and has just been unpacked. It is now on her bookshelf along with other favorite fantasy novels. That sure made me smile!

Although the first draft of Library Lost is finished, there is still much to do. I need to read it from front to back to see how it all comes together. Some writers work from an outline, and they know, from chapter to chapter, how things are going to turn out.

I am not one of those writers. In my head, I have a notion of where I want the story to go, but basically I just wing it from chapter to chapter, and sometimes what I write in Chapter 15 changes what happens in Chapter 8. This means I have to reread very carefully to be sure that I’ve made the appropriate changes.

Perhaps this seems like a funny way of writing. In a way, it is. But I have tried outlining a novel, and it didn’t work for me. First, it seemed like everything was already mapped out, and where’s the fun in that? For me, the adventure in writing lies with not exactly knowing what the characters are going to do at any given moment. Second, I deviated so much from the outline that it felt like a waste of time to even have one.

Anyway, now it’s time to reread carefully before sending Library Lost to my proof readers, who, with squinted eyes, will go over the story. So again, for the next week or so, I will be primarily absorbed with the book and probably won’t do much blogging.

A lot of work, but it’s good work, the work I want to be doing.

Last night, the weather was warm and lovely, and with drinks on the patio, we celebrated the completion of the first draft of Library Lost.

Cheers!

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46 thoughts on “First Draft of Library Lost: Done!”

  1. Congratulations! I had forgotten you were a writer, but I’m glad you’re doing well with it. The draft of my non-fiction book about my system of tarot after having gotten electrocuted is strewn on the big table across from me, unadded-to in a long time, except perhaps by bugs or other critters. Gotta got to it… … …really.

      1. Thanks. Health, weather, and being a bum have contributed to my lack of progress, so I’ll have to fish around for different excuses if I wish to make more of them!

    1. Thank, Judy! But the clock is ticking. I want to have Library Lost ready when I go to a big fair the beginning of November. A lot to do between now and then.

  2. Congratulations Laurie, as a reader and a teacher I’ve always admired writers who produce a WHOLE book … such an act of faith to keep writing, often without knowing if and when it will be published. I never get over the magic of opening the first page of a new book..😀

  3. So exciting, congrats, Laurie! Looking forward to reading the next installment of Maya’s adventures.
    Isn’t it nice to be out playing in the yard again? 🙂

  4. Congratulations. I like your revision technique, and recognise that ambivalence on finishing a book (one I’ve been reading). So pleased you can again enjoy drinks on the patio

  5. Woohoo! A giant step in the right direction! And re-reading will be fun–it’ll be your chance to see the book as a whole. Your mixed feelings at finishing are familiar–I think anyone who undertakes a big, consuming project feels that way at the end . . .

  6. Mazel tov! That is an amazing accomplishment. I hope you enjoy the editing process as much as the writing. Different challenge, but you get to live with your characters for awhile longer!

    1. Yes, yes! And although I am, in general, not a patient person, it seems that I do have the patience to go over my work time and time again.

  7. Cheers and congratulations, Laurie! That awful let down, deflated feeling when a project or performance has finished is awful! Physical work or exercise is the best tonic and then a drink on the patio!

    1. You got it, Clare, right down to a drink on the patio. Wish you lived closer so that you and your husband could join us.

  8. Well done. I’m looking forward to reading it.

    I once wrote enough words for a book but it lacked certain elements like a clear plot and an ending.

    As I wrote, characters were born and matured and sub-plots proliferated. On some days I spent all my time going back over early chapters to insert bits to make sense of ideas that had cropped up later, like the allotment and the exploding cabbages and the exotic dancer who lost her python.

    That’s what happens to some of us who don’t plan properly. 🙂

    You are clearly able to benefit from the freedom of not having an outline to work from but if I ever attempt to write another book I think I will need an outline. 🙂

    1. I love the idea of exploding cabbages and an exotic dancer who has lost her python. But some people do need an outline to keep themselves on track. Different approaches for different writers.

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