Saturday, October 11, 2008

I'm Done (And So Can You!) -- Robin

I have finally handed my middle grade novel, The Happiness Project, over to my agent. (Pant, pant. Whew!) It feels like I just handed in the hugest term paper ever and now I’m cringing to see how many red marks the teacher will put on my paper. Hopefully, she’ll put a big A+ with a cute smiley face. Maybe even draw some stars and hearts. That’d be nice.

Whenever I finish writing a book, I find that I have to take a break. I wish I was one of those people (you know who you are, CynJay!) who can just scoot right back up to the computer and start working on another book. But for me, I need to decompress. Relax. Meditate. Kick back. Smell the roses. Eat popcorn. Watch more TV. Cry over the economy. Kick the dog...that sort of thing.

(And, of course, I don’t actually kick my dog. Just stuffed animal versions of my dog.)

What about you writers and illustrators out there? Do you get started on a new project as soon as you turn one in? Or do you take some time off before you dig in again? I love hearing about other processes…so leave me a comment.

I’ll just be sitting here, kicking back, eating popcorn, petting my dog, and reading your comments. What else is there to do!?



Katie said...

Well Miss Robin...

I think I am more like you. But since the beginning of my newbie career, I will finish one (a small pic book or something) and then kick back with my chocolate and tunes to decompress for a few months, but before I know it - I have another wicked cool idea!

So the decompression time is never as much as I think it will be.

But congrats on finishing your novel!!!!!! I hope to be able to say that I have "Finished a Novel," soon. In fact, that in itself is a tremendously cool and awesome achievement! Rock on Robin!

Disco Mermaids said...

Hey Miss Katie,
It's nice to know there are other "decompressors" out there. And I can't wait to read YOUR finished novel. It sounds like you're working on a winner!


Suzanne Young said...

First off, YAY on finishing your book!!!!! It's dope!

For me, I rarely plan. I just write when I'm inspired. So sometimes I may have two or three books going at once. If I finish one, I may move on to one of the other two, or I might just start something new.

And yes, it confuses me too. lol. But ideally, I'd love to write one book, take a month off and then start the next one!

Hm. Maybe in my next life I'll be less hyperactive and be able to accomplish that.

-Suz :)

Anna said...

Oh, I want to start right after I finish a book, but I rarely do. I often take a break and do some "head writing" (where I think about the stories and characters every day, walking down the street and riding the subway and stuff, but don't write much in the way of pages). Right now I just finished a book and I'm trying so hard to pre-write two more (synopses and stuff), but I'm stymied. I guess I did need a break, but I would really like to be writing again.

Congrats on finishing! I love the relief that comes with that.

Chris Barton said...

Congratulations on hitting that milestone! You're still celebrating, I hope...

I tend to jump right back into things, especially when I've still got that high from finishing one project. Maybe I'll give myself a day off, let myself sleep in until 6:30, whatever, but I'm not so great at allowing myself time to decompress. I get twitchy when I try.

Disco Mermaids said...

Anna, I think I do something similar, where I spend some time thinking about the book and the characters but don't start writing.

And Chris, it's funny that I consider waking up at 6:30 as "sleeping in," too! Ha!


The Bill Cochran said...

Haven't started anything new since I sent my manuscript off about a month ago. Too busy keeping my fingers crossed.

Congrats to you... Hopefully the happiness project brings much happiness.

Lisa Schroeder said...

Yay - you turned it in! It sounds like a great book! Tell her to hurry up and sell it so I can read it! :)

I used to be a write-every-day kind of person, moving on to something new when I was done withe something. But I'm now like you. I need to recharge. I need to rest. I need to not be consumed by a project and cook some real meals, clean the house, that kind of thing. Maybe if I didn't have the day job, I could keep on keeping on. But I just get too dang tired!

cynjay said...

Hey! It's not like I'm obsessive or anything...

Seriously, when the last book was being negotiated, I couldn't settle down enough to work so I was forced into taking a break. I don't do nothing well though, so I guess freaking out took the place of writing.

I can't WAIT to hear about The Happiness Project. I've got everything crossed for you!

Sarah Michele said...

Congrats on finally finishing your book!

So, random question, is the title of this posting at a possible fan of Stephen Colbert, or just a coincidence?

Disco Mermaids said...

I AM a big fan of Stephen Colbert (and so can you!) Ha! I'm crackin' myself up.

If his ears were normal, he'd be cute. Ya think?


Anonymous said...

Congrats! I think I'd curl up with a great book and just read something that I hadn't written, for a day or two!

Hope you get a huge row of smiley faces. :)

Wendie O said...

Well, first I run through the house yelling, "It's a Book! It's a Book!"

If this has been one of my weird times when I have several projects going at one time -- then next I get back to one of those.

But if I don't have anything going, my mind vegges out, life gets in the way, I sleep a lot, concentrate on my family and my day job and eat chocolate. And it's difficult to get kick-started, again. (I don't have writer friends like your other Mermaids to light a fire under me.)

I'm taking a writing course now and am hoping that several of the other students will keep urging me on for a while.

Hurrah for you -- you've got a book!

laurasalas said...

Congratulations! Maybe you'll get lots of big gold stars!

I jump right into the next project, mostly because I have to always be writing to make my income, and if I'm not working on anything for me (meaning trade stuff), then all my time is going to work for hire stuff for the educational market. I'll be working either way, but I try to keep a little time out for the projects I love!

But I also write shorter stuff. With a big project like a novel, I'd probably have to recover some with a week or two off before diving into another one.

Yea for turning in your novel!