The first draft of Spiritus is done, and ready for the Beta Posse. I am now faced with a new challenge – not thinking of it as finished. It’s incredibly tempting, when you reach this milestone, to sit back and bask in the glow of a completed project. I’ve made this mistake before and it’s possibly the most dangerous point in the life of the book. Once your mind decides that it’s finished, that’s it. Edits may come back but the energy and impetus is gone to do anything about them because, hey, it’s complete, right? You don’t need to do any more to it. So keeping that mental attitude is vital.
Not easy, though, because of course now there’s a break whilst your dearly beloved betas take it away and kick it into shape. During that time, you’re sat there twiddling your thumbs and getting out of all those good writing habits which you worked so hard to get into. Solution: start another project. Ah, but here’s the catch – what if that other project takes over, in the same way that the last one did?
I have had the protagonist from the sequel banging on my mental door for some time now, and worked quite hard to keep her out until Spiritus was done. But now I have nothing else to do. So what happens when those edits come back? Do I kick her back to the curb for a while? Will I even want to? Or can I juggle these two very different voices and do both at the same time?