Happy new year to me! Congratulations on successfully completing my Fulbright fellowship, for becoming part of the Romani research community, for some interesting teaching experiments, for actually working through the preliminaries to a novel and writing 150 pages. NaNoWriMo winner! And on Monday I get a hearing aid so perhaps trying to figure out what everyone around me is saying will require less energy in the new year.
But where am I today on my writing project? I have completed a satisfactory draft of the four chapters, plus a good deal of a fifth, and of a prelude. I have a good but not completed idea of what this will all be about. Some of that develops in writing itself, some needs to be planned and considered ahead of time. I have some realistic and ambitious goals. My longer term goal is to complete the first draft of this volume of the three-volume novel by the beginning of the summer, at which point I will do a editorial but not comprehensive re-write. Instead I will commence on the second volume (Havel's Bridge) over the summer and hopefully be ready to write a major section for NaNoWriMo next year, while at the same time re-writing Bloem more thoroughly so as to cohere with its companion volume. I want Bloem to be in submittable manuscript form one year from today, with perhaps a couple hundred pages of Havel done too. I'm not looking to seek an agent or publication -- beside contests like Amazon -- until I have two complete volumes, and a good plan and beginning for the third. I have a job, so I can take the time necessary to do this correctly. My longest long-term goal is to sell this book and to eventually make some living out of writing. Unrealistic? No, not with persistence and vision.