I have, technically, finished my first draft. It runs all the way from the beginning to the end, minus some [square bracketed] missing scenes. The story still known as Statutory State (because I have yet to come up with something better) stands at about 72k. That leaves plenty of room for adding in those missing scenes.
What got me to this point? Sheer doggedness and NaNoWriMo. I got about halfway through by the end of October and spent the first 16 days of November still on Stat.
But now what do I do? It’s over. I skipped those other scenes for good reason–they were taking too long to write. Many of them require research. They must be crafted with thought and care. This is not the NaNo way.
So instead I’m diving into another novel in the Cranbrook universe: Rewind. This book takes place a few years before Stat, when the kids are in eighth grade. Rashid Khan and Aditi Hariharan are the primary focus, and I’m writing Khan’s sections. Vijay will write Adi (and he’s champing at the bit to get started, but he has another project to finish first).
I’m enjoying writing from Khan’s POV, and about his crazy, wonderful family. It’s a nice two week vacation from The Big That Took Forever, a.k.a. Stat.
In December I’ll return to Stat. The process will begin with a complete read-through and note-taking. Then I’ll start doing surgery. It’s going to be a lot of work. All that preparation and I’m still making major decisions about what to include and what to leave out.