Only four months after I boldly declared I had five mere pages left to edit of the WIP, and I’m finally at the true finish line.

I’ve been working on rather more than five pages in that time – those specific pages were to finish off my major stuck-right-into-it edit. After that came going through the MS again to fix any passages I’d highlighted in yellow – because I’d found them to tricky (or they required too much research) to easily sort. Then I read it through once more for polish. Finally, I went back to notes I’d kept throughout the editing process of weasel words to reduce down (almost, really, nearly, quite etc), minor inconsistencies to rectify, and a couple of emotional bits that needed strengthening. Whew.

I think it’s ready to start sending out on submission now. I’m at that stage where I’m just moving commas about, so it makes sense to get outside opinions. I got the first four or so chapters critiqued some time ago, which gave me a lot of useful direction, but the rest is as yet unseen by eyes other than my own. Eeek.

So what comes next?

Well I’m not necessarily convinced this book will be the next big thing. I’ve been working on it a long time – almost too long. My writing skill level has changed enormously since I first set virtual pen to digital paper. But I’m too close to it to judge properly.

I’m hugely thankful to have finished something – there’s nothing worse than having a bunch of unfinished stories on your hard drive. And this also means I can start properly thinking about what to write next.

I’ve still got my ‘Tea’ novel that I started a couple of NaNoWriMos ago – I’m 50k into that, so it’ll be the next main challenge. But once that’s done I’m free for the first time in years to start on something utterly brand new and shiny. Can’t wait. Will it be fantasy or contemporary fiction? Or maybe something totally different? I’m not quite sure yet, but it’ll be exciting to find out.