Thursday, April 26, 2012

The Two Sweetest Words in Authorhood


Or more poetically, to borrow the final line of Dorothy Dunnett's Lymond Chronicles:
We have reached the open sea, with some charts; and the firmament.

The Tainted City is finished!  And on my birthday, too.  My husband and I will do some serious celebrating tonight, let me tell you!  And then I will watch Game of Thrones on DVD, and read books, and speak to my friends, and get outside in the mountains, and all the thousand things that have fallen by the wayside in the last weeks as I raced to finish a coherent draft.

And oh god, how painful that was.  My husband and son and I were all sick last week.  Because my husband is awesome, he agreed to let me run away to a hotel this past weekend for a 24/7 writing marathon without any toddler-related distractions.  Of course, a few hours after I left for the hotel, I got a phone call: the 3yo woke up screaming saying his ear hurt, and screamed nonstop for 3 hours after.  I ended up going home from the hotel at midnight to help my shell-shocked husband take him to the ER.  It was just an ear infection (a new experience for the kiddo; this was his first), but even post-motrin and antibiotics, the 3yo did not sleep for the rest of the weekend.  Which means my husband did not either.  But he insisted I go back to the hotel & keep writing, because he was just as anxious for this book to be done as I am.  Maybe more so.  (He has been wondering these last few months if he even has a wife.)

Of course, the book isn't really done.  Not yet.  There will be revisions and copyedits and all that jazz.  (I already have a list of things I want to enhance or cut or adjust that I'll be working on while I wait for "real edits".)  But god damn, it's an entire coherent story, and that feels SO AWESOME.

Final Stats:
Manuscript Length: 164,509 words (heh, I thought it would be ~150K. Not so much. Though I suspect I'll be doing some significant cuts in revision.)
Deleted Scenes File Length: 34,122 words (good God.)
Number of Day Job and Real Life Things That I Have Been Shoving Off For Far Too Long: approximately 10 zillion.

Happy Birthday to me!  And now I shall party.


  1. Congratulations and Happy Birthday!!

  2. Sounds like something I would do were I in your husband's place. My wife's beside herself every time I have to ask her what to do with my almost-two-year-old. :D He's a brave man, sounds like I should learn a thing or two!

  3. Happy B-day Courtney, can't wait to read this one.

  4. People picture the life of an author as one of ease and inspiration, but even I never thought it would be like what you've been through. Though Douglas Adams's editor did lock him in a hotel for his second book...

    Congratulations and Happy Birthday!

    To the open sea, and enjoy it!

  5. Thanks, all! And maine..."ease and inspiration" - ha! More like "stress and angst". But I still say the highs are worth the lows.

    Bryce - I'm with your wife. :P My husband is used to taking care of our son on ordinary occasions - we've pretty much split child care 50/50 since the kiddo's birth. But he gets far more flustered than I do by nonstop screaming - which you'd think we would both be used to, after my son's extremely difficult first year! But my husband gets all panicky over it, whereas I can maintain more of my own calm. But again, mad props to him - many women I know are not so lucky to have husbands willing to shoulder so much of the caretaking.

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  7. Yahoo! Awesome. --KarenB