Friday, April 24, 2009

A day well spent

I know I've already written a post today, but something, actually two things, happened today that I have to write about.

First, I uploaded my latest corrected version of my manuscript, Healing Grace, to the publisher. I just finished reading Jason Mraz's blog about procrastination, so let me be the first to confess that I've had this manuscript from the editors for 13 months and finally got it back to the publisher. Okay, I've moved, changed jobs, careers, lives, hair color, etc. since then, so I wasn't just sitting around reading Jason's blogs. I've been busy.

Now, to tell you how this novel even came to be is quite another story. On my 40th birthday, over 12 years ago, my best friend from high school, Terry Tucker McBeth, sent me a card asking when my novel would be written so she could make a fortune on all the letters I'd sent her over the years. She wanted to retire early. Because of that, I wrote every night after work and sent her a chapter a week to keep me accountable. I joined a writer's group in Denver and worked on the rewrites and editing for the next few years. Then I decided to build a house, end my marriage, and take up flying lessons, so the manuscript again and again and again got put on the back burner.

After 12 years (and 7 months, I have to add) I have finally sent in my second-to-last edit. They'll make the corrections, and then send the final copy to me. If no more corrections are needed after that next read-through, then the book goes directly to publication. Did I say it has been a 12-year-and-7-month process?

Here's the thing: I wrote the book first, and it became my life. When people have read the manuscript, they've told me that it's autobiographical. Well...I wrote it all before it happened in my life, so is that still autobiographical? It's a sure way of understanding the power of words. I created my life from the words I used years ago to describe a life on pages. I hope you get it, because I'm shaking the cobwebs loose in my brain.

So, I'm in the home stretch. Really if I keep the momentum going, it could be back in the publisher's hands within a couple of weeks, and the next time I see it, it'll be in book form. Ta-da! This is what I write now, so that it will come true. (And this is the story I'm telling myself.)

And then the other momentous, spectacular thing I did for myself today is getting TX license plates on my CO car. Let me explain why that's so momentous and spectacular. It was the last thing I held jointly with an ex, and now it's in my name only, as it should be since I'm the one paying for it.

So, today I put an end to the last thing in my life that had an ex's name on it, and got one step closer to fulfilling my lifelong dream of having a novel published.

Whew! I'm going to bed now. A day well spent...

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