Saturday, August 24, 2013

Sticktoitiveness: Finish That Novel

My two kiddos at the beach.
For our summer vacation this year we drove down to Florida to hang out at the beach. During the ten hour drive my son played video games or texted friends, my daughter read her books, and my husband read his kindle.
I drove the car and just let myself get lost in my imagination. (Not so lost that I wasn't paying attention to the road of course!)
Well, what do you know? After all that time to day dream I came up with a great book idea.
I walked the white beaches picking up sea shells and thinking about my plot. I worked out some of the details, had an idea for a great beginning, and couldn't wait to get home and start putting it all down onto paper.
It wasn't until I got home and sat down at my Mac, ready to write this new book, that I realized the problem.
Me. On the hunt for shells.
I am forever starting new projects. Better projects. And although I am still convinced that this new book idea will sell better than the book I've already started, the truth is, I have no idea what will sell and what won't. None of us do.
Did anybody really think that the Snuggie would become so popular? It's a blanket that you trap yourself into. And the Chia Pet? My kids love those things.
 As far as books go I would not have endorsed a zombie remake of any of the classic novels, but they seem to be selling pretty well.  Could you have guessed that the Fifty Shades of Grey series would sell like 70 million copies? Although I confess I haven't even read the first one...yet.
None of us can predict what will be a hit, but I know that my half finished YA novel will definitely NOT sell unless I finish it.
So, I will continue working on editing the rough draft of the novel I started in July. I'll labor through the steps I outlined in Editing Your First Draft and then (and only then) will I start on my new book idea.

Who knows, by then I might have an entirely different fantastic idea.
All we can do, as writers, is keep our heads down and keep working until the work is done.
This leads me to the word of the day: Sticktoitiveness. 

The definition of Sticktoitiveness on is "dogged perseverance; resolute tenacity".
The example sentence is (swear to God) "The only way she has published so many books is through stick-to-it-ive-ness."

Yes, this post was a shameless excuse to post vacation pictures.


  1. That is a great word. It's so much easier to start new projects than plug away on the same one day after day. Sometimes you have to take a break from one project and working on another one is better than doing no writing. I'm on the 5th revision of the novel I'm working on. Hoped it would be ready to go by now but still needs work.

    Love the pic's!

  2. Oh man, I know what you mean. I just edited my prologue a few days ago, re-read it today (mistake), and realized how much more work I have to do.
    And that's just the prologue:) "Just keep swimming..just keep swimming.."
    El (And thanks for saying you like the pictures!!!

  3. Thanks for this! Pulling up my doc right now to work on it.

  4. Good for you Elizabeth!! Sometimes getting started is the hardest part!! Happy writing:)

  5. We writers learn a lot about writing just from finishing novels. Good luck!

  6. That's the truth. All the advice and helpful books aside, a girl's just gotta write:) Thanks for the luck. I'll need it:)