Today I finished organizing my chapters and compiling an official first draft of my book. I should feel great about it, but I’m mostly overwhelmed. The total word count is 414,000 words. For a proof copy, that turns out to be around 2000 pages.
So that’s the bad news.
The good news is this is only a first draft, and unfortunately a lot of those words are going to be chiseled away like marble as I go through with the good ol’ blue pencil. Proof copies are double spaced, larger font, so you can really get in there and rip and tear. The first 500 pages took an entire printer cartridge and a whole ream of paper. It will be another three reams and toner cartridges for the rest. It might have been a mistake to do it the old fashioned way by printing off the pages and going through it by hand, but when I edited my first book, I found that worked the best.
I’m tellin’ you, I could really use Maxwell Perkins these days. If you want a nice biopic about him, watch Genius on HBO Max.
I don’t know how much I will be able to carve off or sublimate into something better, while still carrying the same concept, but my guess is quite a lot. The idea of reading through this over and over again is enough to give a guy hives. They say to write the book you want to read, because you’ll be reading it a hundred times. They aren’t kidding.
I’m taking a couple days off before I go back to editing. I have some assignments to write for pay coming up, which is good, and I can let the book marinate for a while. Let it breathe. Let ME breathe. hahaha!
One thing I have felt good about is the amount of closure the book has been giving me.
That’s it for tonight. I’m going to watch a movie or something.
Oh yeah, if you’ve ever wondered what you can accomplish by staying off social media this gives you some idea. 😉