Writing a book part 24 - finishing the first draft

After a summer hiatus, I've started writing the final chapter of my book. The plot is still holding together, I think, and I know exactly what I have to wrap up. I want it to be unambiguous and satisfying, but I also want it to be realistic, and fiction plotting can feel a bit pat when all the loose ends get conveniently tied up together.

As well as resolving the main storyline, I want the love story to come together too. It's a straightforward girl-meets-boy romance, and (spoiler alert) they get together at the end. However, conveying strong emotional feeling is probably the thing I find hardest without resorting to didacticism. 

This isn't helped by being impatient to finish. I'm well aware of how much rewriting is going to be necessary, because I have looked back into various chapters to remind myself of what I had already written, and found plenty of writing that I dislike. In fact, it's very easy to convince yourself that large parts of the book, or perhaps even all of it, is complete rubbish - so I try not to dwell on that too much. 

Either way, by the end of next week, I should have completed the final chapter. I will then combine all the separate chapters into one document, print it out and start editing it - on the printed page at first, rather than on screen. I'd like to have a redrafted version ready by Christmas, at which point I will have to decide what to do next ...

Richard HemmingnovelComment