The final days of the First Draft–Part 1

This morning I’m beginning the process of finishing the First Draft.

If you recall from earlier posts, the First Draft is actually the second draft. The REAL first draft was from NaNoWriMo in November, which I’m now calling the Discovery Draft. I thought it would be fun to see what it looks like to be a paid writer, and so I’m using my vacation time from my real job to finish writing the manuscript.

I also have tomorrow and Monday off to get Shelved completed and sent out to the beta readers, which I’ll be using to make the revisions I’ve already received feedback on from my alpha reader and two others who have been reading along to make sure I’m not making huge irreversible mistakes as I go. I need to tighten up the writing in the first half of the book as well, if not everywhere. It’s incredible how NaNoWriMo writing is so robotic.

So here’s what my day looked like today (keep in mind, my husband still had to go to work, and we still had to get our 3-year old ready to go to daycare today).

6:57 AM:

  • The dog wakes us up. She’s very vocal about being hungry (annoying). I think she lives for food, and if she were street-wise I think she’d survive just fine being a squeaky wheel/scavenger, but she’s NOT street-wise. She’s very hard-headed. My husband gets up to feed her instead of me, which is the opposite of how it usually goes.

7:35 AM:

  • After waking and going back to sleep approximately 6 times since 6:57, I finally get up and check my email on my phone. Someone is asking about a discount code for my Etsy shop. I wait to reply until I’ve had my coffee. I help our son get dressed. While my husband sends him off to daycare, I wash my face and brush my teeth, and then take my normal cocktail of vitamins to try to ward off all of the ridiculous preschool illnesses our son brings home and spreads all over our house. They say they make them wash their hands there, but I’ve seen my son’s hand-washing skills (or lack there of).

7:50 AM:

  • COFFEE. I turn on the light in our beta aquarium but the fish is still sleeping. I can’t feed him unless he’s awake or else all the food falls to the bottom and mucks up the water. Fish sleep with their eyes open–no eyelids.

8:00 AM:

  • I finally sit down to reply to the Etsy inquiry and to start this blog, but Firefox isn’t working. Instead I’m getting the spinny wheel of death. So I try Safari instead, and get a notification that Adobe Flashplayer is out of date. I download it, then try Firefox again. It works! I reply to the Etsy inquiry and begin the blog.

8:19 AM:

  • Open up Scrivener and fight off writer’s block. I took the day OFF for this–Must Use Time Wisely!

8:22 AM:

  • I remember I haven’t posted a photo yet on FB for March Photo of the Day challenge my friend invited me to do. I consider making a blog about it when I’m done with March, and I create the template and save it. I don’t have anything good yet for today’s photo, and I consider taking a picture of my coffee as the theme for today is “Essential.”

9:05 AM:

  • Eat a breakfast bar and reheat coffee. Don’t actually drink it.

10:59 AM:

  • By now I have completed one chapter, checked in with my alpha reader, changed two character names using a find and replace and then manually double checking everywhere, checked in with my Cabin Mates at Camp NaNoWriMo (begins April 1st), procrastinated everywhere I could on the internet, edited my scheduled blog post for the chapter 7 excerpt, and am finally returning to writing.

11:10 AM:

  • Laptop dies. I plug it in and turn it back on, it dies immediately. The light switch needs to be “on” for the outlet to work. Turn it on, turn laptop back on, wait five minutes for everything to come back up, and I decide that cookies are in order. And cold coffee. I daydream about taking a shower, but I’ve procrastinated enough already.

11:15 AM:

  • Back to writing chapter 42 of Shelved.

11:51 AM:

  • 266 new words written, mostly dialogue. That’s not enough! This is going to be an arduous process.

12:08 PM:

  • Took a shower and decided to move locations for inspiration.

1:15 PM:

  • Does carbo loading work for writers the way it works for runners? Let’s find out! Noddles and Company, here I come!

1:45 PM

  • Carbo load worked. Well, that and lack of WiFi to distract me. Next stop, coffee shop.

2:00 PM

  • Go to Ziggi’s, snag a 20 ounce soy vanilla latte and a loveseat. I can do this!

3:15 PM

  • Another chapter finished and sent to my alpha reader.

4:24 PM

  • 2,073 words written today. 14% battery remaining. Leave Ziggi’s stuck on researching ham radios.
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