I am betwixt and between. Jobs on my plate and deadlines – some fixed, some mutable – approach. This has been the busiest writing time of my life and it’s not finished with me yet.
If nothing else this time is teaching me to change gears quickly. I veer between hard-core high body-count SF, cosy crime and Biblical inter-generational epic. And that’s before I get to my own writing, which probably lies somewhere in the middle of that very complicated and possibly interdimensional web.
I’ve had another writers’ group gathering since we last talked, and got more feedback on a section of my own writing. Useful stuff. And tonight I go to give feedback on a complete manuscript of a friend’s.
If you ever have the chance to join a manuscript exchange group then I’d heartily recommend it. You learn a lot about your own writing (not to mention personality) by comparing your opinions with those of other critiqueers. It’s a chance to find out in what areas you’re hot on – if you notice slips in dialogue and character, say, or plot or pacing – and what might be flying over your head. And learning this enables you to see what you need to work on in your own writing.
Then, of course, you get your tender evisceration of your own work. That’s why it’s called an exchange; you take turns to rip the heart out of each other’s opus.
I’m hoping to get the last of my Antarctic trilogy considered before too long. It’s just awaiting a final polish (I hope) before it goes off to the publisher and I want reassurance that it’s not a pile of poo. I have a (possibly not very good) reputation to maintain, after all.
So it’s onwards, onwards, onwards for me. Now, back to that cosy crime: it must be finished before close of day.