About 12:50 p.m. today, EDT, I finished my thirteenth novel — and promptly burst into tears.
Well, it’s long been acknowledged that I’m not particularly hardboiled.
Now “finished” is a relative term. Would I send this version to my editor or agent? No, in part because — it’s not due yet. And it really needs a good polish, particularly the last 10,000 words, most of them new and most of them written this week in increasingly manic bursts that have left me with sore-ish wrists and a punky right shoulder. (My posture, when I write, is not as good as it should be.) But there are no missing scenes in this version and everything is worked out.
And a shout-out to Mark Billingham and DEATH MESSAGE because I honestly believe that his incredibly satisfying novel, the seventh in the Thorne series, helped to propel me over the finish line. When you read something that good, you want to be in the race, too, even if you’re lagging far behind.
My subconscious, however, must have known a celebration was coming because when I stopped at the grocery store today (the incomparable Eddie’s of Roland Park), I bought: fresh crabmeat for tacos, Dogfish Head IPA (they didn’t have Raison d’Etre) and Otterbein chocolate chip cookies. I had a very satisfying lunch while watching part of Waiting for Guffman on videotape.
Now I get to spend the rest of the day waiting for a repair man. (I’ve got the noon-4 p.m. slot, who thinks I’ll see anyone before 3:59?) I might get my act together and provide links, in the comments section. And I may even drop a hint or two about the Christopher Guest regular with whom I had exactly one date; I pined for him mightily, but he just wasn’t that into me. We went to see Carol Channing in HELLO, DOLLY. I don’t know why it never worked out, given our mutual love of musical theater.