Saturday, February 03, 2007
A BOOK IN A WEEK
I was coming off a frenzied three weeks of hammering out WICKED WAYS, the sequel to GETTING HERS, when I decided to take a break and check my email. (Mistake #1). I read an email from my editor from Harlequin saying that she couldn't wait to read my next installment in my Pause for Men Series on Friday. Needless to say it was Wednesday at the time. My hands began to shake and I went into a mild panic attack. Of course my editor MUST be insane. I didn't owe her a book in two days! I scrambled through my files and located my contract. YIKES! She was right. And not only was she right she was actually giving my 2 days grace. I was fresh out of ideas, so the only thing to do was ignore the email of course! I still needed a week to finish the book I was working on.
I eventually called my agent who contacted my editor who graciously said, "Friday is fine." Friday! That was a week away. I finished WICKED WAYS, emailed it to my editor and took a one day break to clear my head. But the only coherent thought in my head was that it was impossible. Yet, I had no choice. The cover was already produced and it was scheduled for release in July. What I needed was a plan. And the one writer friend I knew who could knock out a book in record time was my girl L.A. Banks (aka Leslie Esdaile). After consoling me for about ten minutes, she told me of a plan of action.
1. I needed to be selfish, cut myself off from family, friends and the dreaded internet.
2. Start at 6 am. (yick)
3. Write in blocks of four hours. Take an hour break in between for food and exercise.
4. Stop by ten p.m.
5. Make my notes for the next day and go to bed.
Well... I did exactly what she said. My generaly daily output on a good day is anywhere from 20-25 pages per day. With this plan I was able to up the ante to 35-40 pages in a day.
Fortunately, it was regents week and my son was off from school, so instead of spending the hour in the morning getting him up and out and to school, I had that time to work. And I worked.
But Friday arrived I only had 156 pages. Panic once again set in, but I was going to be brave. I called my editor myself and once again she was very gracious and said "Monday, first thing is fine." Ouch.
I continued with the plan throughout the day and through the weekend. When Monday came I had 210 pages. But miracles to happen. I wrote a grand total of 55 pages in one day. I emailed my completed manuscript at 4:45 on Monday!!! Much to the delight of my editor.
Of course this in NOT something I would recommend on a regular basis. However the plan works. It is simply a matter of being focused and staying the course.
With any book, you must have a plan of action and goals that you set for yourself. If it's five pages per day or a chapter per day, stick with it and do it.
The bottomline is, a writer writes!