Did I mention I finished the 4th draft of my novel? Yes, I did, earlier this month. It took 5.5 weeks. This is amazing, especially since the previous drafts each took 6-7 months. NaNoEdMo is to account for this, of course, and also I think the book is actually, finally, coming together.
After profuse congratulations, my mentor talks to me about “the next draft.” This is the cycle, again, and my reactions are the same. I don’t want to hear it. This draft is it, I think, it’s as good as I can make it. A friend of mine worked diligently with her writing partner on a television pilot for months – years? – and they would send out drafts and get comments over and over again. Eventually, she told me, their readers said, It’s good. It’s done. Send it out. I hope one day my mentor will say this to me. (The little voice in my head goes, but when? When? When?!) Of course, he may never say this. I’ll have to make that decision myself. How will I know it is done? That is a whole other conversation.
My mentor also suggested I watch “Gossip Girl” – this is homework I don’t mind. The main piece of advice he has given for this moment is to relax, recharge, and refill my creative cup. I am in Yosemite with my family on Christmas Eve, and the timing couldn’t be more perfect.