Here's the plan:
1) I've taken a semester off of grad school so that I can write the second draft of my book. The plan is to get home a little earlier/on time from work and plug away at it uninterrupted for a few hours in the late afternoon everyday, 3:00-6:00. My wife gets home a little after five, but she has offered to give me until six. Three hours a day ain't bad. I don't think I'll be able to get much done on my lunch break, but I can use that time to read the first draft of what I wrote and jot down ideas for revision as well as get work-stuff done so that I don't get stuck their late.
2) I'm going to write a chapter a week. Deadlines are a big help to me and I realized during my first semester of grad school that if I have to get a lot done by a certain time every week, I can if I really put my back in to it. My goal will be to have a chapter ready every Friday afternoon. If I need to spend extra time working Thursday or Friday night, so be it. If I can't get it done, then Saturday here I come!
3) People are going to read my work (I hope). This is the part of the plan that requires the help of others. One reason I do this blog is so that I have a group of people I report to on my progress. If I'm not getting anything done and posting anything on blogiversity, out comes the guilt and soon my Dad will be asking, "Why haven't I seen anything on your blog lately?" What I'm going to do now is, after every chapter I write (rewrite), I'll send that chapter to the people who want to read my book and give me their opinions. My hope is that with people depending on me for the next chapter of the book, if its good and catches their interests like it should, that I'll be forced to pick up the pace and finish this sucker off.
Soooooooo....Who wants to read my book?
I got this idea after my brother-in-law joked about me suckering someone in to reading my book and then throwing my giant 155,000 word manuscript at them. Thunk! Not a good idea. It can be a huge chore just to get people to read a short story for me. Hell, my wife's been putting off reading a short short of mine for a while now (ahem, Mary!).
The last thing I want to do is be a burden to anyone, especially people willing to help me out. If you're interested in reading my book, I don't expect you to send me your comments by any particular time. I can either just send them out to everyone on the list every Friday or I can wait until people ask for the next chapter. Haven't decided yet. I'll wait to hear what people would prefer. The first thing you need to know is that I don't need a lot from you. I don't, repeat, DO NOT need any grammar or typo corrections. I can do that. It may not look like it from what you get in your inbox, but I promise you I know how to fix those things, I'm just not focused on them at all at this point. That's not what second drafts are for. That's what final polishing of the final draft is for. What I need is just your honest opinion. Just send me a quick note back saying, 'Good job so far, but I didn't really like so-and-so's character. Their dialogue was cheesy and annoying!' or 'This chapter was kinda slow. I think you should pick up the pace by doing such-and-such, because I think this should happen next.'
If you want to go above and beyond and send me a detailed description of what you thought, liked and disliked, then great! Please do. But I'll I'd like is to hear some honest opinions. You can't hurt my feelings. I had a semester of Mark Weingardner ripping apart my work, trust me, I can handle whatever you throw at me. If you hate it overall, I need to know that! I mean, I'd be helpful to know why, but I need to know.
With that said, if you're interested in being one of my readers, please let me know. So far I have two, my brother-in-law Joe and my buddy Copperhead who owes me for reading and editing his grad school papers. If you don't personally know me but read this blog of frequent blogiversity just comment that you'd like to and I'll get in touch with you. This project begins the first week of January.
Until then, I'm Eric and I'm an unpublished writer.