Wednesday, 23 October 2013

I Pressed Send

I almost cried last night. I have a broken foot and an infected ear - of which I shall spare you the details - but it wasn't that. The washing is piling up, the bedding's unchanged and the bathrooms could do with a 'bit of attention'. But it wasn't even that.

It was because yesterday, at 8.40pm I finally pressed 'send' on Glass Houses.

Its re-write has been nine months in the making. Following one agent's disappointing rejection but generous and astute feedback on the full manuscript at the end of last year, I embarked on a re-write in January. Then came dissection during the wonderful Writers' Workshop Self-edit Course at Easter, which inevitably led to a second re-write. Incidentally, I call it a 're-write' if it loses and gains more than 10,000 words - a bit like a crash diet but infinitely more healthy. 

Some of the fab self-editing crowd (and Gayle!)
A heap of hasty amendments followed on the back of workshops and talks, not to mention the general writer-ly buzz, at the York Festival of Writing, as well as from my new term of teaching. Is there a better way to say that, we wonder, it's bordering on cliché, I suggest, and off I trot home to *practise what I preach*. A final burst of tweaks after meeting with my new reader (she's so clever) and there I was, Sunday night, just in time for tea before Homeland, and it had gone, my baby, flown the nest again.

And like every baby resistant to change, after months of cajoling, tweaking, listening - albeit distractedly - and the odd torrent of abuse and self-loathing, I have sent off a better book than the one I submitted last year.


That isn't to say I will emerge with a contract. All I can do now is hope. And wait.

Well actually, now I clean and file and hoover and 'sort out' the wardrobes. I think about Christmas and cleaning the skirting boards, sort out the leak through the downstairs window, call the electrician to fix the kitchen lights, book tickets for the local village play, rearrange the short break I booked somehow forgetting I was working, earn some money and do my physio for my foot. And I sleep. I'm going to sleep at both ends of the day and for a period of time in the middle. 

And then I shall get back to work on book two… 

So, lovely readers, how are you?

22 comments:

  1. Fingers crossed. Hope it goes well.

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    1. Thanks Charlie - you saw it at the start, she says, slightly embarrassed...

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  2. ooooo....exciting.

    Good luck

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    1. I know! I'll keep you posted, Hazel!

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  3. Very exciting and wishing you well and running again soon.

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    1. Thanks Bee! It's going to be a while I'm afraid but ... at least I can write (and cycle).

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  4. Well if it is any bit as entertaining as your blog it should be a winner.

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    1. You're first on the invite list for the book signing ;)

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  6. At least you've got stuff to do to keep you occupied :-) Pressing send is a huge deal when you've spent so long on the same project. Fingers crossed for you.

    I'm re-writing at the moment - my definition is the scenes ending up in a different order (the ending sometimes moving to the start!) and my slashed words bleeding all over the carpet... Now that's a decent rewrite lol

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    1. Hi Annalisa, yep, can't say boredom features heavily in my life - ever. Sometimes I think I'd like a morning of it but I'm sure I wouldn't really :) I agree, moving around definitely belongs to re-writing and my heart does sink sometimes when I know a chapter has to move, as the repercussions for the rest of the book can be massive, can't they!
      Best of luck with yours.

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  7. Exciting times Jackie! Fingers crossed - I'm sure it'll be snapped up.
    Sorry to hear about the foot (and ear)
    Nicky x

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    1. Thanks Nicholas! I'll mend... and an agent signing would definitely help the healing process ;) How are you? I hope you're writing??

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  8. Jackie, this is great news! As you know, I loved the original version of Glass Houses, but since you tell me this version is even better, I'll certainly believe you. Surely it's bound to get an agent and publishing deal this time round. Looking forward to reading it in due course. Lots of love and very best wishes.

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    1. Awwww bless you remembering those Authonomy days, Gerry! Thanks for your lovely comment, I'll keep you posted :)

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  9. Congratulations on a job well done, and I hope your foot heals up quickly. Ah the never ending housework - I like your idea of sleeping through it all, except the holidays, of course. Those are the best times of the year. Have a great weekend :)

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    1. Thanks MJ! My foot is getting there thank you, and I guess the jobs are too. Amazing how quickly you fill your time with other things though, isn't! Thanks for reading :)

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  10. So sorry about your broken foot, hopefully it'll mend perfectly. And it is frustrating and hair pulling to re-write and revise a ms, and I hope this time you'll get your contract! Good Luck!

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    1. Thanks Cathrina! A contract would be very nice... I'll let you know :)

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  11. I'm so impressed! It's very hard to do revision after revision - you have to be tolerant, patient, and determined. I see you are. Wishing you a contract soon, and sending lots of healing thoughts for ear and foot. Feel better. :-)

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  12. Thanks Lexa, all on the mend I think - those vibes must be working:) Here's hoping a contract is moving in the right direction too...

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