For most of the summer, I have been placing each chapter of my forever-ongoing-to-no-end-in-sight World War II story into a running manuscript. Running manuscript, because it’s always ‘opened’ on my desktop on my laptop; forever-ongoing-to-no-end-in-sight because I am adding each chapter at a time and editing as I go, and I’m second-guessing decisions as if I have all the time in the universe to run this race.
I’m pretty sure this is not the normal way of putting a manuscript together. I’m willing to bet that most of us writers have the novel ready in its final draft and ready to copy/paste into a manuscript template for sendoff to an editor. Not this writer. Nope! I still need a couple of revisions to go because I write my chapters in separate documents (always do), and I have yet to piece them together into one document. Typical me.
Thankfully, I have outlined the novel! I have the chapters in order and even some fine summaries. Yet, honestly, some days I’d like to just publish the outline instead of the actual book. Why? Because it’s DONE.
Sure, I have rearranged a chapter or two. And regarding the summaries, I haven’t even clarified the new changes that I’ve made. Regardless, it’s certainly more complete than the actual novel by the simple fact that it’s COMPLETE. It has a beginning, some meddling middles, and an end. My WWII outline is now ready for Kindle!
I might be the first to do this, so I’d be a trendsetter. And after you buy the bones and ask me for the meat, then I’ll send you my manuscript, as is, and maybe some notes at the bottom of each chapter that describes what I had in mind for the scenes and the characters. Don’t worry. I won’t charge you for the actual manuscript. I might even attach a questionnaire asking you what I can add per chapter so I can update the original outline.
In the meantime, I can start writing out an outline for my next works in progress. I’ve got an interesting Western story hiding somewhere in this laptop, and I’m currently writing a gay humor piece (as mentioned in my last post). I can outline those and sell them along with that questionnaire. I have a neat Irish story, too, for Gay Lit readers that I can dust off (mentioned in one of my earliest posts) and type out an outline with the most beautiful, picturesque, and riveting summaries. Or, I suppose I can include all three outlines in the most eclectic set ever sold!
Or, I can get back to piecing together my WWII manuscript for the next series of workshopping.
Manuscript. Running. Second-guessing. Time.
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