Posted by : Sherri Cornelius Thursday, April 29, 2010

Where to start, where to start?

Well first, I'm just coming out of a migraine so if you haven't seen me around in a few days, that's why. Darn sinusitis.

I quit drinking coffee for a while. Figured out that I can have one cup with no ill effect on my tummy, but my problem is stopping at one cup. I enjoy the ritual of the coffee, and also I feel like I owe it to the coffee to drink it. Weird, but that's how it is. I think a lot of us have that "clean your plate" mentality, which affects all my habits around food. A while ago I said I was going to do better with my food choices, and I have. I've only lost about five pounds, but I'm really working on the habit part rather than focusing on losing weight. Things like making sure there are healthy things in the kitchen, not being lazy about cooking, and thinking about portions rather than just shoveling it in till I can't anymore. Those are the things that will make me a healthy weight and keep me there. I can wait to hit that mark if I know it will last.

What else...

Oh yeah, I finished my book. Sent it to my first reader on Tuesday and had a migraine headache an hour later, whatever that means. Thinking of everything I've gone through during the course of this book is a bit overwhelming.

I didn't have the confidence to write this book when I started. It doesn't fit into a template, I see now.  I tried to make it fit a template and ended up spinning my wheels for a couple of years. For a long time my forebrain told me it was a mess, even though it made a lot of sense to me, and the characters spoke with their own voices. Only when I threw out the template did it come alive and drive me to the finish.

We'll see how the public receives it, but whatever happens I've written the book I wanted to write, and that's a pretty damn good feeling. Later in my career, I will say, "That's when I learned how to be a writer." Shoot, this whole BVA period has taught me how to live.

{ 18 comments... read them below or Comment }

  1. Jane Smiley says that writing a novel is the way we become who we truly are. You said that "Only when I threw out the template did it come alive"- which proves her right :). Good for you Sherri!

  2. It certainly has been a journey for you! I feel like I've been an observer though the whole thing with you, since I remember when you started the book back for NaNo in '07. You have come a long way my friend. :) I think you've grown as a writer.

    And other ways too. Sounds like you've been making some positive choices there for you life and it's having some good effects for you. Except for the headaches. I hate it when you get headaches. I worry. *hugs* Keep up the good work!

  3. Congrats on finishing! You rock like igneous!

  4. You mean you aren't supposed to shovel food in until no more will fit?

    Congrats on the finished book. It was interesting a year ago and I would like to see the finished product.

    Decaf allowed me to drink coffee without my stomach trying to kill me.

  5. It's been quite a trip. You've made a lot of mental jumps along the way, things which affect your outlook and attitudes. Not only are you a different Sherri, you're an altogether different person than sat to write this out originally.
    Bravo on finishing! Woo! Congrats!
    Now, off to the agent for marketing. :D

  6. I'm trying to make good choices. It's funny how each one makes subsequent ones easier. Thanks for sticking with me all this time. :)

  7. Weird, I know I replied to this but it's not showing up. Stupid website!

    I agree with Jane. Thanks. :)

  8. I'd switch to decaf with no problem, but my husband won't let me. I'm too lazy to make coffee twice.

  9. Thanks. I'm still in the final editing stages, but I think in a couple of weeks it will be sent. Unfortunately, that's when publishing stops for the summer, but maybe I can sneak it in before they're all gone. Thanks for being there. :)

  10. Congrats on finishing..only took me 9 years!

  11. Thank you, Doreen, and welcome. Your link isn't taking me to your blog...would you like to give me a good link?

  12. Congrats on finishing the book. I'm still working away at mine when my brain will cooperate, and am at the moment sort of stumped for an ending.

    Having someone who can read along and give suggestions really can be a big help. Unfortunately, the friend that used to read along for me in the past passed away while back. It's a lot harder finishing books without her.

    Totally off topic, glad to see another crazy NaNoWriMo participant, I've been doing it since 2005 :)

  13. Oh, I've only done it twice and no more. It's not for me.

    As far as having someone read your stuff, I'm sure there are others around here who would be willing. You write fantasy, correct?

  14. No actually, only the first novel I ever wrote The Road To Nowhere, was only half-fantasy. (as in parts of the book took place in a dreamworld the characters invented) I did briefly make an attempt at another fantasy story, (The Path Of Shadows) but quickly discovered it wasn't my thing.

    The last handful of novels that have worked have been more of the suspense variety, though they don't fit neatly into any one genre.

    Finding Heaven has elements of suspense, mild horror, paranormal, with a bit of a non-traditional romance. Sins of Eden is a sequel but I may also end up scrapping most of it and tacking the parts I keep onto the end of the first book.

    Sorrow's Moon, I am not quite sure what genre to put it in. It probably leans more toward suspense than anything, but it's another one that doesn't fit neatly into any one category.

  15. Well as far as I can tell, any element of fantasy would make the powers that be categorize it as a fantasy. Choosing a category for one's own novel is definitely difficult. Keep hanging around here long enough and you'll probably find someone to swap stories with. :)

  16. Hurray! Hurrah! Yea you. Many people say they want to write a novel. Some people start a novel. Few finish a novel and go from there. You are awesome.

  17. Thank you, Marta. I felt so much pressure with this one since the first one didn't sell, and that may have been one reason it was so hard to finish.


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