So, I’m sitting here debating how much I want to say, and instead, I think I just need to start.
This week has been wild.
On Sunday, depression surged up and wrapped its ugly hands around my throat. But I don’t mess around anymore. I called in all the reserves: meds, essential oils, tons of water, vitamins, meeting with my therapist, a chiropractic adjustment. By Wednesday, my world wasn’t ending anymore.
Which is interesting because on Tuesday I talked to my editor about Yes Novel, and she said, “Start over.”
Yeah, you read that right. Start over.
But guess what? That conversation made me so happy. I’m serious. Because I wasn’t feeling good about Yes Novel (haven’t been for a while!) and so to hear my editor say that she wasn’t either meant we were on the same page. That’s such a good feeling. I can’t tell you what a relief it is (and how lucky I feel) to have an editor who is more committed to putting out a good book than to staying on schedule.
Because I’m not afraid of working hard. But I’m terrified of mediocrity.
(More thoughts coming soon about my battle against perfectionism.)
So, I started to re-think Yes Novel and what changes I wanted to make if I started to rebuild it from the foundation up. It needs a lot of work, guys. It made me think of the novel I set aside in November 2014 in order to start writing Yes Novel. It’s a manuscript that I’ve re-visited over the last year more than once. I’ve missed the characters. I’ve missed the island where it takes place. It has more things in the right places than Yes Novel does.
In one fifteen-minute drive home, I’d all but convinced myself I wanted to switch projects again. Again. (Remember this?)
I emailed my editor and asked her to take a look at my old manuscript (let’s call it Ardor Novel), and she agreed.
This morning she emailed that she was excited about the manuscript!!
Does that mean I’ve officially switched from Yes Novel to Ardor Novel?
No. But probably.
And I couldn’t be more excited. Stay tuned to learn more about what has happened in the past year behind the scenes to prepare me for returning to this story.
But for now, please leave a kind comment for this pummeled, anxiety-ridden writer who is currently jacked up on bookish adrenaline. I’m exhausted. But I’m almost shaking with excitement. I could use some cheerleaders!
So excited Jackie!!! You’re proud and awesome! Love you and keep me posted!! So proud and happy for you!! 🙂
For when you are weak, you are strong!
Thank you for your post 🙂
Looks like taking a break from Ardor to “date” other characters has given you the perspective to make Ardor work. That’s awesome! I’m planning something similar with two of my own WIPs.
You know, I really think that’s true! I have a couple stories to share about it, but I want to make sure that my editor and I for sure set on Ardor Novel first! Hope you’re doing well!
Whatever you publish will be on my to read list, my friend. You can do it!!!!! You have the God given gift of writing and making words sing and He will guide you. Can’t wait to see where that leads and what you together will come up with.
You’re so sweet, Carol. Thank you, my friend!
Jackie, so much to respond to here! I’m glad you are excited and that you got some good news this week. And I love that you were able to call in the reserves. So important!
Thanks, friend. It’s been a weird seven days, that’s for sure. But I’m on the up and up now. I think. I think I need to write a gentle, humble post about how writing under contract is less glamorous than one might imagine. To be honest, I can’t wait till this book is done and I can write a third book out from under any pressures!
Almost every author I’ve heard read or chatted with in NY has said #2 is the hardest, so even though it’s not fun I don’t think you are alone at all. Sending you good writing vibes (always).
Thank you for letting me know that! I really think it’s true! Hugs!!!
Jackie, you are so amazing! I only wish I had the creative gift that you have been given. God is with you I each step, so trust what your heart is telling you to do!
You’re so sweet, Deb. Thank you. It’s been a wild week, but I feel excited for the future!
Glad you are excited! If Ardor novel has any quantum physics (or other physics or astronomy, etc.), you know who to call 🙂
You are a very patient individual and I appreciate the way that you do life. ❤ You got this!
I know it’s probably weird, but posts like this are so encouraging to me, Jackie! I’m proud of you for rolling with the punches and wish you a 2016 full of beautiful words and special moments as a writer.
Thanks, Amy! That means a lot. I have a hard time with the line between vulnerability and TMI. 🙂
Reblogged this on JACKIE LEA SOMMERS and commented:
One year ago, I made the decision to set Yes Novel aside after fourteen months of hard work. I returned to a draft of a story I’d written earlier (Salt Novel) and now, a year later, I’m working through a revision plan of attack. My editor is on board. I love the characters. The story has a soul.
It’s all still so very hard. But rereading this post is a great reminder of how far I’ve come.