★ Finishing It

I've reached that stage in the creative process where, on the verge of finishing draft one of the novel, I find myself struggling to force out the final sixty or so pages. I think the problem is twofold: first, I've already unintentionally turned my mind toward the first revision. It's impossible not to think about the changes that I'm going to make when I go through the story again. That makes it significantly more difficult to focus on the draft at hand, especially when I find myself coming up with new ideas that, while appropriate for the late stages of the book given the way certain characters have developed, contradict already-established events that I'll have to change the second time around. It's frustrating to not be able to guide the story the way I'd like it to this time around, but that's what I get for the way I write. I don't like to lay out the whole story before I write it, because then I'm stuck trying to conform to an outline, and by extension, shutting out potential sources of inspiration and avenues of creativity. On the whole, I prefer my approach, but it is not without its consequences. Second, independent of any next steps in the process, I'm just ready for this draft to be done. It's a tremendous intellectual strain to force myself to write every day after work. Some days I hit my word goal, some days I don't, but I am at least getting a couple of pages done every day, and I'm finally reaching the point of exhaustion. I need to finish this draft just so I have a draft finished, at which point I'll be able to step away from the process for a couple of weeks before starting again. I'm honestly just ready to be done with the thing for a bit, but in order to do that, I have to finish it, as exhausting as that may be.

But I'm slowly but surely making my way to the finish line, and I hope to have a draft completed by the end of the month. Here's hoping!