Revising a Novel Before Christmas


For a writer, it sounds either exciting or dreadful, doesn’t it?

This year, I took the leap and hired a very good, trustworthy, no bullshit and hidden-fees freelance editor and a proofreader. As for the grammar corrections, oh well, it falls on me.

This writing adventure will more than probably end in a self-publishing one, so I really need to invest a bit in order to present to readers the best version of the YA paranormal writing project, a novel I’ve been working on for a little more than a year.

A novel with a title (yeah!) that I’m not sure about (dang!).

Said deadline is: January 4th, 2021. That’s tomorrow, or close enough !

The only way I will be able to finish the revision and the corrections in time is if I make a plan and stick to it.

And I need a plan about the day job… and the to-do lists… and the Holidays prep…

Traditional Publishing VS Indie Publishing: The Forever Debate

At 9 years old, I knew I wanted to be a writer. To have my novels traditionally published. To live by my pen.

Many decades later, I finally decided to make that dream come true. Seriously. With the support of a part-time day job and of my family.

I’ve been treating writing as a job for about three years now. So far, I’ve written four novels, in the MG and YA. Two rejected, one not sent to publishers, or in other words shelved.

The fourth one is the YA paranormal novel I’m going to send to my editor. Aaaaahhhhhh !

I finished the first draft in June, and I’ve been a bit lazy with the second draft since then.

I’m almost halfway there.

Since June, I’ve been thinking, researching, pondering to pros and cons of going traditional or indie publishing.

I’ll go indie publishing for the YA paranormal.

Because the chances for that book to be traditionally published before 2024 are slight. Because there are fewer and fewer publishers around here (North-American francophone bubble, remember dear fellow writers?) who are publishing new voices. Or can afford to do so.

If the book gets selected at all, of course.

The Revision Sprint Plan

Before planning anything, let’s take a look at where we’re at, writing wise and life wise shall we dear fellow writer?

The writing: I revised 32 000 words out off 84 000 words of the first draft. I suspect I’ll end up with 80 000 words, because I’m getting rid of a LOT of info dumping, oh dear me!

The life: my 2020 day job quit me. If you’ve been around this blog a bit, and read some of my Writing Diary series, you know it’s a relief for me. Really.
There’s business blog plan development happening, glowing with the beautiful bright shiny idea light of a new project. It would be easy to get lost there and live the revision grind behind.

I love my novel, but I’m ready to think about a new story. I have to finish this, leave it to my indie editor and stop thinking about it for at least a whole month.

Without further ado, here’s the plan.

I want to be finished with the revision in six weeks, so just before Christmas.

To succeed, I have no choice but to treat the revision as a serious job, and I need to set myself up to stay motivated!

My goal is to revise 5 chapters a week. Yes, I know I got stuck with one paragraph for a week. I’ll have to get my s*it together.

Otherwise, no working on a new project! And no baking Christmas cookies. And no… well, you get the idea. No extracurricular fun activities unless I meet my weekly revising goals.

During the week-ends, the rule is: absolute down-time.

Some writers thrive under pressure. Some other authors have dead serious deadlines, involving the whole publisher team people. Mega-pressure.

I do need a little pressure (and a reward system!) to stay motivated, but for me, over doing it is a recipe for disaster. I know, I’ve done it before!

Let us see, fellow writers who are kind enough to have read this whole post – thanks so much!, what will happen next.

I hope you’re well and safe. I wish us all the good words and awesome revision vibes!

Auteur : Marie Alice

Writing away and reading books. Joy! Écrire à tout vent et lire des romans. Joie!

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