I just finished the first draft of this book!
I always feel like celebrating when I finish a book. This is my 42nd romance, and the thrill of finishing another book is as fresh as it was when I finished my very first one (Falling In Love With Her Husband back in 2007).
Here are some things I learned in the course of sprinting this book (for anyone who’s interested):
Epilogues are good in romances.
I added an epilogue to this one, which isn’t something I normally do, but after learning that some of you really love them, I decided to add it. I found this out on Facebook. (I also added one to Patty’s Gamble.) So all of my books from this point forward will have one. I didn’t realize how popular they are, but now that I know, I’m going to do them. One of my goals in writing these books is to provide the best reading experience as possible, and that does mean I listen to what you like. So yes, authors do care about what people who read (and like) their books think. The reason I said “and like” is because our goal is to write books for people who like the kind of books we write. People’s tastes vary so much that we can’t listen to everyone. We have to pick what advice we’ll take, and our first loyalty is always to those who enjoy our work.
You can sprint if you are a panster. (In other words, this isn’t only for plotters.)
I am very pleased with the way this book turned out. I have to be honest, since I sprinted this book, I wasn’t sure how power writing it was going to work. I already knew where I was going in Patty’s Gamble, so that was easy. But with this one, I started it at the 25,000-word mark. That leaves a lot of plot to develop, and though I made five outlines, none of them worked out as I planned. I’d started writing a scene, and it’d veer off into a totally different direction that changed the scenes I had planned after it. I kept going back and adjusting my outline, but those changes were quickly altered as well.
So can a panster plot? I guess it depends on how the characters feel about it. These characters ended up telling me what to do up until the epilogue. I honest had no idea how things were going to work out with this book until I typed the last line. Patty’s Gamble was not like that. I was able to plot out with that one.
You can write fast and produce a good story.
Can someone write super fast and produce a book worth reading? I believe so. I know a lot of writers will disagree with me, but those are usually writers who don’t write fast anyway. Some of us are just born with the ability to write faster than others. Why? I don’t know. It’s probably why some people pick up foreign languages quicker than others or why math is easy for some but not others. (I suck at foreign language and math, so it’s good I at least have a fast pace with words in my favor. 🙂 )
I can’t explain how I can write fast, but for people who are naturally bent to writing fast, the sprinting method will be that much more awesome. Can it work equally well for writers who don’t write as fast? I don’t know. I’d need someone who writes slow to tell me.
Is sprinting for everyone?
Of course not. That’s just like saying that the color blue is for everyone or that we must all like fried chicken. We’re all different. But if you can put aside the internal editor and naturally write fast, I believe the odds are more in your favor.