15 solid hours on “A Hare in the Elephant’s Trunk”

Just returned from spending the night at our cottage.  I put in 10 solid hours on Saturday and another 5 hours on Sunday, after receiving 7 pages of editing suggestions from my mentor, Gary Blackwood.  The weird part is, I was never bored or tired of reading, re-reading, and revising during that whole time!  The weather was beautiful, 10 degrees and sunny, so I did take a few outdoor breaks.  The manuscript now stands at close to 65,000 words – it started at 21,000 last July when I submitted it to Peter Carver and Kathy Stinson for their Port Joli writing retreat.  WOW!  Never thought I had that many words in me, but there are just so many details that need to be included to make the story authentic, and interesting!  I recently bought a couple of books over the internet about the Dinka people and folktales, and they’ve been very helpful. If you’ve never attempted writing a novel, I can only say be prepared to surprise yourself – it’s a ton of work, but lots of fun, too – provided you enjoy working with words, that is…Still lots more revising to do, but I’m getting there.  TTYL

I’ve been hard at work on my middle-grade novel manuscript, inspired by the life of Jacob Deng, one of the so-called “Lost Boys of the Sudan”.  I’m being mentored on the project by Gary Blackwood, (The Shakespeare Stealer and others), and it’s been an amazing experience so far.  I’m so used to writing for my eyes only, and it’s wonderful to have Gary’s experienced and wise eyes looking at my writing.  The manuscript has already gotten so much stronger, and we’ve only met in person once, although we’ve done some email editing as well.  I’m heading up to Truro in the morning to meet him, and I’m hopeful he can help me solve a problem I’m having toward the end of the manuscript.  It’s grown from about 30,000 words to close to 50,000 in just one month!  TTYL