At 4:58 am on the morning of January 07, 2017, I posted the final chapter of my first ever full-length novel on this blog site. So cometh the end of a 05-year journey. The project was riddled with disruptions – one gap nearly 3.5 years long – during which time I hit a block so massive, I began to believe that even my endeavor to commit to writing under the surveillance of an audience had failed. Thankfully, a trip overseas to the country where I originally acquired my writing voice jostled me out of this funk. And so today, I am truly the author of a finished novel.
This is a big moment for me for the obvious reasons. It is for anyone who manages to produce a whole book. I’m sure there are thousands of us out there who have been bitten by the bug a few times in our lifetime where we vigorously plot and create mind-blowing characters but when it comes down to typing out the actual manuscript, don’t get past a few chapters. At least, not in the first few attempts anyway. It has happened to me so often in the past 15 or so years that I finally resorted to posting the chapters of I’ll Be True online on a weekly basis to shame myself into reaching the finish line – a reminder that everyone was watching and so quitting was no longer an option. Still, it took me 04 years 10 months to write 26 chapters. I allowed myself to be led astray. But the point is that I kept at it and so have proved myself capable of writing an entire work of fiction. 75,460 words! That should deserve a pat on the back. Right?
It’s strange that I’m not floating on the rosy high of accomplishment – I had expected to be. I mean, after being forever preoccupied with my career, I gave it all up to turn to working full time on my dream of becoming a best-selling author. So having finally passed level 01 of my goal should give me some kind of buzz, right? Nope. Nada. I just wrote the last chapter, edited it, put it up on the site and went to bed. I read a book written by someone else for a while and that made me feel more moved than what I had just done. And when I fell asleep, it wasn’t even in relief. I was just tired from working late into the morning. And now, I’m thinking if the thrills haven’t kicked in even with 38 hours gone by, maybe it isn’t shock that has me sedate.
Perhaps I ran out of adrenaline since it took so long to complete. Perhaps it’s because I published it chapter-by-chapter on my own damn blog that it does not possess the glory for me that comes with being “a published author”. Perhaps since this novel was always meant to be my practice run and that I did not write it with a sale in mind that I don’t really feel like I made a mark. Perhaps it doesn’t count. But I really want it to.
Which reminds me, now that I’m done writing I’ll Be True, I should get started working on the manuscript I WILL sell. Time to grill the fat…