Back in the Grind

Last night, I finished another round of edits on my favorite book.

I’m pretty stoked, friends. For a couple different reasons.

One: I got back into the writing routine. 

After a year where my writing output was pretty much shit, knowing I can get back into a routine and stick with it was refreshing (especially after I put a different project on hold in order to work on this one, when unleashed a slew of its own emotional problems). Yet for a couple of weeks, I sat down and went to work. Some days, I edited a page. Others, 25. Sometimes it was just line editing. Others, it was completely overhauling an entire chapter. But I sat down and put in the work, reminding myself that I can.

I’m really stoked about that.

Two: It was editing unlike anything else I’ve ever done.

I’ve edited books before, whether as a beta reader or my own work. Yet this was the first time I had to change a fundamental aspect of the plot, which mainly affected the beginning and the end, both which got complete rewrites as a result. I ended up opening a different document to copy and paste the scenes I cut, whether because they followed the old aspect of the plot that I changed, were repetitive or I thought I could do something stronger.

It ended up being 30 pages worth of work, single spaced.

writing blog GIF

It may seem like a little thing, but I know myself. Two years ago, I probably wouldn’t have been able to cut all that. I would have been too attached to the words I’d already written, too hung up on the work I’d already put in. Now, I realize that revisions of that magnitude are sometimes necessary to improving your work that much more. It doesn’t mean any of the words you wrote before are suddenly worthless, even if they didn’t make the final cut. Those words needed to be there, in order for you to be where you are now.

I’m growing as a writer. I like to believe that I’m becoming a better one.

And that’s exciting, too.

Three: I have a vision for the future.

In order to fix some plot holes, I had to do some digging in regards to the series. I had a vague idea of what I wanted to happen, but I needed concrete ideas. I needed to know exactly what was going to happen at the end, exactly how my character arcs looked, what major plot points I wanted to hit in the narrative arc for the entire series. I figured it out and it made me fall in love with this series even more. I’m excited to figure out what happens in book two.

Four: I met my self-imposed deadline.

Early, in fact. I wanted to have edits done by December 15th. I got them done by December 5th. 10 days early. Hell to the yes. Does that mean I’m always going to meet every deadline put in front of me? Not necessarily (though that’s always the goal). But I know I can put in the work and I know it’s possible, and I’ve learned some important things while working on a deadline, so, the next time one comes around, I’m ready for it.

Five: My book is stronger than it was.

excited new girl GIF

And that?

Well, friends, that’s a really cool feeling.

Future wise, I may take the rest of December “off” of writing. I have a lot of books I want to get through, reading wise, and it feels like reading has been on my back burner for awhile, now. Thanks to the cold weather, my PS4 and I will also be getting some quality time together. Not to mention the rest of the holiday awesomeness to juggle through.

As far as writing goes, I’m not sure if I want to pick back up the sci-fi novel I was working on or attempt that urban fantasy I shelved earlier in the year. Or maybe I’ll start working on book two of Artemis’s series. There’s also that YA trilogy I want to edit, though talk about some work.

I dunno, there’s a lot of choices, floating around (not to mention the research required, looking at agents to query as I head back into the trenches). I’m excited to see where my muse takes me, come January (or perhaps earlier, if the calling is really there). Regardless, I’m going to enjoy the rest of December and try not to refresh my email too much.



About Nicole Evans

Nicole Evans is a writer of fantasy and science fiction. She is currently unpublished and is working fervently to get the "un" removed from that statement. With six books under her belt and more on the way, she loves to write about destined heroes who fail anyway, twisting classic tropes on their heads, animals who feel more like people and, hopefully, about characters and worlds for you to have an opinion about. She really can't wait for you to read these stories.  Considering she has run out of space for putting rejections letters up on her wall, Nicole now uses her spare time doing the typical things that nerds do: blogging, dying repeatedly during video games (which she believes is retribution for the characters' she's killed), wishing she was the character she is currently reading about and trying to fight off the real world by living in her own head, with varying degrees of success. Nicole has a degree in Creative Writing and a minor in Film and Media Studies, and works as an evening librarian assistant. View all posts by Nicole Evans

9 responses to “Back in the Grind

  • Joyce C

    I am so proud of you and the progress you’ve made! It is never easy to bring yourself to cut out chunks of your story, and moving stuff around is painful. But it’s the mark of a true, dedicated writer to wade through that swamp for the sake of a better story. You’re doing great, Nicole!! ♥♥♥

    • Nicole Evans

      Awww, Joyce, you are way too sweet. And your comments/feedback helped so much! Seriously, I wouldn’t be where I am today without an amazing support group and that most certainly includes YOU. ❤

  • philcharlesr

    This is so great to read Nicole, fantastic work! Well done for making the necessary cuts, I know that feeling. I’m on the third draft of my Urban Fantasy and this draft barely resembles the previous one so far.

    • Nicole Evans

      Isn’t that crazy, to look back at the previous drafts and see how it looks completely unlike what you have in your hands now? We’re both killing it, Philip, and I cannot wait to see our books on the shelves together!

  • Pravinkumar Sananse

    It is really a mature analysis that you have done of your writing skills. It really is a wonderful feeling to see the hard work done over the years now paying off. I’m glad to have followed you. Looking forward to learn a lot of things from you

    • Nicole Evans

      Aww, Pravinkumar, that really means a lot! Thank you so much for the kind comment. I hope your own writing journeys are going well and look forward to seeing you around the blogging sphere. 🙂

  • blogsofwriting

    I do a lot of writing and rewriting etc.. and reading your post has really given me the focus to pay more attention and continue with my writing/blogs regardless of who is reading and or following, which is sometimes hard when you have a family, work and continuing school. The people on word press is very support oriented and it gives me hope to be a good writer. Thank you all so much.

    • Nicole Evans

      Awww, I’m *so* glad it’s inspired you! THat’s the best compliment you could ever give a blogger, so thank you, Keesha! I know it’s hard to find that balance between regular life and life as a writer, but I wish you all the luck in the world that you’re able to find a balance that works for you and keeps you happy!

      If you ever need a listening ear or someone to vent to or support you, you know where to find me. Good luck!

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