Join Me on Writing Journey
Yesterday was a BIG day for me. It was the real beginning of my writing journey.
I had my first all day video conference with the fabulous writing coach, Anita Henderson of Write Your Life! Wow, what an experience for a new writer. She'd requested to read the manuscript last week. I was scared to share my rough manuscript with her because I knew it was not ready for prime time, plus somehow, I got off track about two-thirds of way through it. The second half the manuscript didn't connect well to my original book outline. She assured me that this was a writer's ugly stage, so I sent it to her. The first step to moving forward when you're stuck is to ask for help.
After our initial pleasantries on the conference, the first thing out of Anita's mouth was "How do you feel right now"? I explained how excited I was to have professional assistance, that I was anxious with anticipation and that how I could already envision the book in my hand. She responded, "Remember how you feel right now. You'll want to keep that excitement throughout this process." I thought, ugh oh, this sounds like a set up.
Then she added, " I like your stories and you've got some really good notes." (I was hoping she was referring to my tracking and clarification notes and not my real content. Did she see my work as just notes?) She continued, "We're going to take a fresh approach to your book. I'm going to help you with a "structural edit to the it." Well, you and I know that any time someone talks about a "structural" change of any kind, it's going to be major. I decided to stop holding my breath. I relaxed. She asked loads of questions and then lead me down the structural edit path.
Anita's recommendations were thoughtful, creative and on point! So now I have a fresh approach that fits really well with what I want to accomplish with the book. Yes, it does require a revision my outline, a new simplified chapter approach and a deletion of about a fourth of what I've already written. (Coach made me feel better by saying I should save the work and use it for another writing project.) Additionally, I am creating some new chapters. With all of this rework and new work, you'd think I'd be sad. Quite the contrary, I couldn't wait to get to my computer this morning. I am more enthusiastic about the project than ever.
I have my marching orders for the next 6 weeks, which include something I'd put off for months. My original plan was to interview several people who influenced my life and use their stories in the book. I'd talked myself out of it but, Anita's structural change makes those stories really important. I've got some tough deadlines but I'm chasing them with all I've got.
I would love for you to join me on this writing journey. It’s going to be a ride for sure!