Sunday, January 31, 2010

The End

By Robin Kaye

Today was my favorite day as a writer—the day I finally wrote The End. This is a good thing since Yours For the Taking is due on my editor’s desk on Monday, February 1. I drove home today from my lovely critique partner’s house knowing I had to write this blog, and I thought about the experience of writing this book. I know every book is different, and no two experiences are going to be the same, but having just finished my 4th book for Sourcebooks, I’m beginning to see trends and subtle changes in my writing process.

With every book, I find that writing that beginning and the end gets more difficult. It’s been my experience that the book will be almost finished for the longest time, but I go back and rewrite the beginning and the end over and over and over again. A book not only has to begin with a hook, it has to end with a hook. It has to make the reader want to reach for my next book. Unfortunately for me, hooks are not easy to come by. So I’ve been writing and rewriting the end of the Yours For the Taking. I think it’s done, but then I still have tomorrow to change my mind, and knowing me, I’ll take another crack at it. I’m impossible to please so I thank God for both deadlines and revisions. Most authors hear that and wonder if I'm masochistic. Maybe I am, but I see revisions as a chance to catch all the things I missed the first time around. I know, I’m a sick, sick puppy.

I think I’ve seen a lot of changes in my writing process during the writing of Yours For the Taking because I didn’t have the time I had to write that I had with my previous books. I’ve always been a pretty clean writer. I write a scene and I don’t move on until I’m happy with it. It’s the same way with a chapter, but in the past, I’ve read and reread the book countless times before I actually finished it. Not this time. I just didn’t have the time to devote several hours to reading the book when I needed to be writing the darn thing. Because of that, last weekend was the first time I sat down to read the entire book. I met with my critique partners and we read the book aloud from beginning to end. I went to our meeting with a good bit of trepidation. Truth be told, I was sick. I was sure that the book would be awful. Actually, I think my exact words were, “God, I hope it doesn’t suck.” My Critique Partners (who I’m sure have a place in heaven with their names on it) told me I was wrong. Me, I just prayed they were right. I have to tell you, the torture went on the entire two days we read. I’d say “Okay, the first 115 pages are good, but what about the next 285?”

I might be shooting myself in the foot because my editor has yet to read it, but I the manuscript was much better than I thought it would be, which in laymen terms means I’m pretty sure it doesn’t suck. I kept waiting for it to, and although there were a few rough sentences that needed to be rewritten, and more spelling and punctuation mistakes than I thought existed in the world, all in all, I was happier with this book than I was with any of the others. Mind you, I haven’t had much sleep and I just got over a bad case of the stomach flu, so I might be delusional, but at least I’m a happy delusional.

I’ll do one more read-through tomorrow, and send the manuscript off to my lovely editor Monday morning, at which time I’ll have a bad case of agita until I hear from her. It’s a good thing my agent has already given me my next assignment—writing the proposal for my next three books. I have my work cut out for me but at the end of the day, I’ll still be praying that my editor calls me and says “I loved it.”

The End

Gosh that feels good!

12 comments:

  1. Hey, Robin, congrats for writing The End!!! I'm just writing the beginning of Taming the Highland Wolf and having a blast, so I can never decide which I like better, writing The End to the last manuscript, or diving into the next! Have fun, celebrate, and good luck!

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  2. Congratulations on finishing and good luck on hearing those magical words from your editor. Also congrats on the three book deal.

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  3. I love writing the end because it allows me to jump into a new book, but then, it also means writing the synopsis for the proposal, which, is not so much fun. I do hate writing synopses.

    I've been madly in love with my next hero since I met him in Yours For the Taking. He's been flirting with me and doing his best to take over the manuscript. I didn't allow that, but ooh, I can't wait to get deeper in his psyche and meet the woman who can tame him. Trapper Kincaid is so yummy, I can't wait.

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  4. Mason, we'll see if they accept the proposal, but I can't help but think that once Deb meets Trapper, she's going to be chomping on the bit for his story. I know I am. I'm going to start the proposal on Monday.

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  5. Congrats on writing those 2 big little words bella. I read many an author quoted as saying that the the most difficult one to write ends up being the best one. That goes for most difficult character too. That means we can expect magic from you again. Congrats on the next deal & I kind of hope those ones drive you a "little" bit crazy too LOL. BTW I'm already hooked if it has your name on the cover.

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  6. Mary~ I wish I could clone you. You are sooo good for my ego! Thanks bella.

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  7. GREAT post, Robin!

    I know how you feel, because that's just how I felt with my July release, The Wild Irish Sea! It was my first book written under contract and was very scary because I didn't have the luxury of time I had with my previous two.

    Only one of my CPs had the time to review the whole manuscript and even though she assured me it was "my best work yet" I was scared to death that it sucked ditchwater! LOL!

    When our lovely editor emailed to tell me "congratulations on writing a beautiful book" I was truly on Cloud 9!!

    Can't wait to read Yours For The Taking!

    AC

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  8. Thanks Cindy~ At least I'm not alone in my present state. Still I hate waiting for the word from on high. Noting like spending a couple of weeks on pins and needles.

    At least I can take pleasure in the fact that most authors are neurotic. I'm in good company.

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  9. Congratulations on The End! It is a wonderful feeling.

    I am sure we all know how you feel, Robin. I just finished the last chapter of edits for book #4. It was a relief, I am sure I caught all the major bits and addressed everything Deb said, and am satisfied. Yet I know I will go over it again, and STILL feel as if it isn't quite perfect when I send it away in a few days!

    I know your book will not suck. In fact, I am pretty sure it will be awesome! Pat yourself on the back and enjoy the moment!

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  10. What a great post, Robin! Thanks for giving us some insight into your process. I'm learning to write faster and cleaner, too, now that someone actually cares when I get it done!
    I'm sure it's terrific, and I can't wait to read it.
    By the way, out of all the books in my house (and there are many, since I've worked in bookselling for over 20 years), yours are the ones my petsitter loves! When I came home from a vacation last year, she sheepishly confessed that she'd taken one of them off my shelf and started it, and could she please take it home because she couldn't bear to leave it behind! Now I always leave your books on the nightstand for her.

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  11. Robin, I'm CERTAIN it doesn't suck! You've said that about all of them, and have they? Absolutely not!

    But I completely get that feeling. I've been saying in a lot of my blog posts that we never know if it's good until someone else reads it AND tells us it's good. I'm sure it's good. Congrats on finishing!

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