Thursday, January 17, 2008

Deadlines - Laura Drewry

A looming deadline can really put things into perspective for a writer. Sometimes, though, that perspective takes it own sweet time in showing itself. Case in point – I have a deadline that is closer than just simply looming; it’s moved right on into the ‘bearing-down’ stage and the labor pains are getting closer together.

I’ve known for months this deadline was coming and though I always stress a little about them, this one in particular has always been niggling at my brain since Day 1. You see, even though I’ve never been a plotter, I always start a new story with two things firmly planted in my brain: the first scene and the last. But with this story, I didn’t have the first stinkin’ clue how it was going to end.

Because of this, I was spending a great deal of time writing, deleting, rewriting, editing, deleting, writing, deleting, rewriting, editing. . . well, you get the picture. New ideas would come, I’d try them out, and they’d fizzle. The more time passed, the more stressful this was becoming, and the more stressful it became, the more time passed.

And then, about two weeks ago, it hit me: that wonderful ‘light bulb’ moment that finally made the story crystal clear to me. It’s what I’d been waiting for, it’s what I needed, and it’s always one of my favourite parts about writing a new book. And now, after long last, the light was on, the pennies were dropping, and I was good to go.

Sounds fabulous, doesn’t it? Absolutely!

However. . . this same light bulb also shone its glaring yellow light on everything that was wrong with the book thus far. And it wasn’t pretty.

Much of what I’ve already written needs to be rewritten, edited, or deleted all together. And it needs to be done soon.

Sooner than soon.

My editor has been very understanding about the whole thing, and has offered me an extension, but I’m determined to make the original deadline. It’s going to mean the kids and the DH will eat a lot more Kraft Dinner and Cheerios, and someone else might need to sort the laundry, but I’ve convinced them that they might just survive.

So I’m going to sign off here and disappear behind my monitor again. By this time next month, the book will be finished, the family will be reintroduced to produce and protein, and I’ll be moving on to the next project. I love this business!!


Donna Alward said...

Oooh! I can relate to this! ANd I got very good at saying NO the last few in, dude, my book's already late, I need to get it in!" LOL

Good luck!

Maureen said...

Good Luck!

Wolfy said...

Hi Laura

Good luck on getting it all done and in on time. I am sure the family will survive, although you might here much grumbling........LOL

Estella said...

Hope you succeed!

Michelle Styles said...

As someone who asked for an extension and got one, I would say that the editors are wonderfully sweet about such things. They want quality books.
Deadlines to a certain extent are moveable feasts.
The important thing is to keep incontact with your editor and to tell them what is happening.

Lily said...

Good luck with the deadlines :)

Nathalie said...

Good luck with that stress.