Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Patchwork Novels

by Patricia Kiyono

I haven’t posted here in several months, and I apologize. Normally I’m a lot more dependable than this when it comes to writing deadlines. But this seems to be the year for missed deadlines. I’m not sure what’s going on—I still love to write and create happily-ever-afters for my characters, but sometimes it’s like pulling teeth.
I spent all spring and summer working on a novel that was supposed to be a sequel to Christmas Wishes, my holiday book from last year. I told my publisher I’d have it done by May 30 and I wrote, and rewrote. May 30 came and went and I still worked on it, missing out on all sorts of summer fun, and ignoring my poor hubby. But I couldn’t get it to the point where I felt I could submit it. I just didn’t care for the characters that much, and the story line just didn’t hold my interest. And if it’s not interesting to me, it’s definitely not going to be interesting to anyone else! I finally abandoned that project when I realized that my publisher has a Christmas book deadline of September 30, and I’ve sort of set a goal for myself to publish a holiday book every year. So I got to work on that.
A few days ago I FINALLY completed and submitted the manuscript. I could have held on to it and polished it a bit more, but knowing myself (and having a good working relationship with my publisher) I went ahead and submitted, even though there parts I didn’t like, and parts that I knew weren’t strong. If the editor is good, she’ll pick up on those weak areas and ask me to change it. If she doesn’t find them, I can make changes anyway. This particular story used pieces of other projects that I’ve started and abandoned, and they seemed to work together to create this one – sort of like a patchwork quilt.
Hopefully, I’ll be able to resurrect the project from this spring and make it into a good book. I might have to change one of the characters, or maybe both. But I’m not going to toss it out. There are parts of the book I really like, and maybe I’ll cut it up and use them in something else. I’m a quilter, so that makes perfectly good sense to me! The point is, although I’m disappointed that I didn’t get my spring/summer project done, I got a lot of work done. I was writing, and that’s what writers do. I did finish two smaller projects, and hopefully next month I’ll be able to share one of them with you!

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