Drawing to a close

Unfinished threads are a problem. I’ve got a long list of them that I need to clear up. This is how the word count creeps up, you’ve added too many red herrings Barsby!

Although apparently the word count won’t be a problem. According to a Google search done in the office this morning, I’m still at least 10,000-20,000 words short of the perfect novel length, the length that publishers like. Currently with some loose threads and just two scenes more to write I reckon that 10,000 more shouldn’t be too hard.

It’s been a good week for the novel. I was seriously contemplating blowing our household budget on escaping somewhere for a few days when luck and the gods intervened and sent me to Cumbria via work. Expenses mostly paid! A bit of time to myself, a bit of research about what that area actually looks like, the laptop and a quiet room in which to stay.

Emma in New Zealand is reviewing the novel with her expert crime reader’s eye and I will be taking her suggestions on board for the 4th draft – the re-tweaking draft I’m calling it. For now, my concentration is on the unwritten bits and now there are just two to go. The end is in sight!

Having said that, I’m now beset with insecurities. (What? I hear you say? Surely these have been there from the beginning? It certainly feels that way…) Not just is it good enough but should there be more clues? Should I stick more stuff in to piss off the detective more? Will the reader guess whodunit? If they do, does it matter? Is it just overly sentimental trite tripe?

And what should I do with it now it’s finished? I took one of those psych tests today: “You’re no good at long term forward planning,” she says. No kidding. Do I have any ambitions? Should I start the process of trying to find an agent with a view to getting it published? Having started writing just to see if I could, now I find that I can, the ambition grows a little. One step at a time.

Which brings me back to actually finishing it. I want the two main scenes done by the end of the weekend and then I can go through my list of plot discrepancies and look to tying up my loose ends. But don’t be surprised if the knot’s a bit wonky, will you?

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