Okay, so maybe Julius Caesar's "I came, I saw, I conquered is a tad melodramatic for a blog title, but it's how I'm feeling right now.
I finished my book!
I mean, technically it's only the first draft, and technically I still have a lot of work to do before it's ready to see the light of day, and technically there's no real guarantee it'll ever go anywhere, but...
I finished my book!
Way huge, folks. I mean, way huge. This is the first book I've ever started that I've finished, which considering the number of books I've started, represents a major milestone for me.
Come to think of it, I've had trouble finishing most things I've started in my life. I'd always convinced myself it was because I was such a "free spirit". While that's probably partially true, I don't think it's the whole story.
I think what it really comes down to is direction.
Specifically, the fact that I never really had any.
I've kind of floated through my life for as long as I can remember. I always knew that "conventional" jobs and education and relationships weren't really for me; unfortunately, that left me with a lot of "maybe"'s, but nothing really to work for. I mean, it's easy to figure out what you don't want. What's harder is finding what you do.
That's not to say there aren't constants in my life. I have a wonderfully kind, blessedly patient husband who is my absolute rock. I have an ever-expanding circle of friends who are way cooler than I probably deserve. And I have a sweet, supernaturally gorgeous baby son.
It was actually when I found out I was pregnant that I realized my approach to life had to change. My then-current approach had been working all right, but it was incredibly unstable. And I couldn't afford to just bounce from job to job anymore; I had to start thinking about an actual career that could work for us as a family.
Fortunately, Nature gives us nine months to get our shit together, so by the time our son was born, I had more or less cobbled together a plan. Basically, to write like hell, finish a book, and see what happened.
I realize that doesn't sound even remotely like a plan. But it was as much of a plan as I've ever had.
Along the way, I've fleshed it out a little. Now my plan isn't to just finish the one book, it's to finish lots of them. And sell them. And create my own brand, and market that to people who might be interested, and reach out and find as many of those people as possible, and... and...
Basically, instead of my plan being a nuclear bomb, it now resembles more of a shotgun blast. Still a bit out-of-focus, bordering on haphazard, but growing clearer and more precise by the day.
And I finished my book, which means it's already working.