Tide Marks

I’ve hit page 150 of the manuscript, and right at 30,000 words of the story. I’m currently on target to finish on time while still having time to revise and polish before my extended deadline is up. I have 90,000 words to go, and 450 pages — I’m currently averaging 200 words per page. Very tidy.

And I have 48 days to finish the whole thing and get it revised and in the mail. At my current pace of about 12.5 pages per day, I estimate finishing the first draft in 36 more days, not including Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Eve, which I’ve given myself as scheduled non-writing days. Even with those three days off, I’ll still have 12 days to revise.

If this sounds hair-raising … it is. It’s like homework on steroids. But I have to confess, there’s a certain thrill to being able to do it, too. It’s a tightrope without a net, and for a reformed adrenaline-junkie trauma nurse like me, it’s a taste of old times. Only nobody dies if things go wrong.

I much prefer the stakes in writing to the stakes in nursing.

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About the author: Novelist, writing teacher, on a mission to reprint my out-of-print books and self-publish my new ones.