See, I finished the first draft of When Life Hands You Lymes back in the middle of April, dutifully waited the six weeks before looking at it again and then… instead of eagerly devouring the book like I had been planning on I was so overwhelmed that I didn’t even want to think about it. Much less look at it or work on reading through it. The thought of starting on the second draft? Ha! That made me feel like crying. And I’m not even being dramatic here.
It’s not fun having a such a huge part of my life fell so utterly tiring and out of reach and beyond my ability to work with. See, not only did I spend 465 days writing the book, but I spent seven years researching it. (Yeah, that’s a fancy way to say I had Lyme disease for seven years and when I call those years “research” it makes me feel a little bit better.) The point is I have a lot invested in this book. Which is probably why the thought of reading through it was so daunting.
I mean, what if it is absolutely horrible? I know that at one point it was because draft 1 is actually more like draft 1 & 1/2 because part way through I went back and deleted about 30,000 or so words because they were horrible and the main character was a whiny mess who I detested and wanted to lecture her on how the world didn’t revolve around her sorry little me-centered self. Plus, I needed to start the story at a totally new place, two years after the original first draft started.
Also, there was the problem that I constantly switched back and forth between first person past tense and first person present tense with the point of view and knowing I need to change that is a little bit overwhelming. At least I don’t head hop any more like I used to do constantly. (Hey! I’m growing as a writer. It’s a good thing.)
And then of course theres the whole “Do I have enough character development in there?” question because this is my first full length novel and in kid mysteries there’s not a ton of character development to be had. Pretty much character development has me shaking in my bare feet because it’s a daunting task. I don’t want my MC to be totally unloveable at the beginning but I don’t want her to be an angel at the end. Plus of course I don’t want it to come across the wrong way.
Oh, and when we’re talking about things that make me overwhelmed, we’ll just go ahead and mention the supporting character cast. Yeah. Deep breath. Other than the MC there are six characters who are in the book a lot: Madalyn’s parents, two brothers, sister and best friend. (I like family-ish people.) The first draft I focused mainly on Madalyn and what she’s going through but I know I’m going to need to delve into at least some of the other characters more and that’s a bit ahhh-ish to me. (Meaning freaky.)