It’s a bit of an anticlimax to be honest, especially in these days of Th€ O£ympic$ ©®™ and highly trained athletes crossing the finish line to the adoration of millions.
Writing isn’t a spectator sport. It’s held in quiet venues in the absence of an audience. It’s a sport for introverts. Watching it would be as dull as watching paint dry. There’s no competition here, it’s a series of personal bests; I finished that scene, that chapter, that book; I rewrote and it’s better. Every version is an improvement. I’m no Michael Moorcock; it took two years to get here. And I try not to say “I’ve finished” because people keep giving me funny looks. But I really am now. Honest. And besides, writing is like software development; you should never go with version 1. In Pseudocode terms;
Determining “Done” is a goal unto itself. It’s four parts toil and one part perfectionism. But the trap for me has been to toil without feedback, because without it, I could never be truly objective. Constructive feedback is good — point out the shortcomings and the good stuff — so thanks to Gem and Monika for helping there. It’s also the editing. Because when you edit from the beginning, you can see what’s working and what has to go. This final version is 78,000 words, I’ve written and cut triple that.
Now there’s a final read-through to iron out any phrasing weirdness, and then the hard part: find an agent.
So if you know of anyone who handles Sci-Fi Mystery Thrillers, let me know.