Carrying on from last week's post, the manuscript for my next book is finished and submitted. "Just" went from 399 occurrences to 168, "grin" from 84 to 25.
Now, there remains only to respond to recommendations from the editor, copy-edit the galleys, fill out the publisher's Author Questionnaire, and then plan promotions. Sending in a manuscript doesn't mean the book is finished.
A while back, in the middle of a promotional tour, this bit of doggerel came to me, apologies to Stephen Foster and Susanna:
I come down from Minneap'lis like a bat straight out of hell,
'Long Thirty-five to Omaha, sure hope the books will sell.
Then out to Lawrence, Kansas, a quick session with the fans.
And catch a plane to Scottsdale, all those readers with their tans.
Promo touring! You fly, you drive, you run.
You write a book, you think you're through?
Oh, no - you've just begun.
Still, submitting the "final" manuscript does bring a sense of completion. Like many writers, I feel some sadness; it's been likened to postpartum depression. But it's leavened by the howling in my skull of the story that's been waiting its turn for some six months, and now damn well wants me to draw my deep breath and get with it. In addition, as you can see, there's all the stuff I've had to put aside (literally and figuratively) for the past month to get the manuscript finished on schedule. Just because no one's forcing me to do it doesn't mean writing novels is anything but a full-time job.
Oh yes, almost forgot. The title of the book is A PERILOUS CONCEPTION. Poisoned Pen Press will bring it out in December, 2011.