I've sat down to write this post many times. Every day for nearly a week, I've attempted to put into words what it has been like to finish my WIP and adapt to life back home all at the same time.
Overall, I've been fairly productive. I knew I had to get my current WIP done before I move to camp to be counselor for the summer. I'd try to get up by nine every day, which turned out to be very difficult. College sucked more life out of me than I had thought. So, anytime my brother needed to be at school early, I volunteered to take him so I had a reason to get out of bed. I learned to create an instrumental playlist on Spotify that could help me get focused quickly on my story when I made time to write. Within two weeks, I'd rewritten and edited the last 34,000 words in my dystopian/utopian mashup novel.
In addition to finishing the book, I wrote the synopsis, blurb, pitch, and query letter. I finished reading "Discipling" by Mark Dever and "Go Set a Watchman" by Harper Lee. Also, I read all of "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan in a day. I've also been spending a lot of time with my family, making sure I don't crawl under a blanket, rejecting the world around me entirely, just so I can write. With a family as big as mine, I naturally did a lot of driving around, especially for my brother. He's a fifteen-year-old Sophomore in high school and was given the male lead of Prince Charming in his school's Cinderella. I sorta a little proud of him. When we had nights free, my family played many games of Settlers of Catan. It's been a favorite of ours since Christmas.
But, overall, life hasn't been any busier than when I've finished other stories. However, I was so much sadder to finish this book than other projects. It took a while to figure out why this time was so different. First, I loved my characters, and I loved my story. Part of me didn't want to type "The End" and set the manuscript aside because I enjoyed writing it so much. I've always liked writing, but I loved writing this book.
Also, never before had I not had a story to go back to when I finished. Whenever I finished a draft in my previous book, I would work on this book. Now, I have nothing. It's been a longtime since I've brainstormed a novel from scratch. I wrote this book so that I could write a sequel. Perhaps, that's what I'll work on next, but I've never written a sequel before.
I never expected finishing this story to be such a learning experience for me, but it has been. And, I'm excited to keep learning as my writing journey keeps changing.