Researching Ends (Boo!) and the Editing Begins (Yay and also Boo)
Starting the new year by finishing a manuscript!
I just finished the manuscript I have been working on for several years. As I move on to the next stage, I keep hearing “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” in my head. While I’m super excited and proud of myself for having completed this project, the research has been so much fun that I’m going to miss it very much.
Way back when I first started taking notes on Agatha Christie’s books, I envisioned writing a book of my own to place the stories in the context of the times when she wrote them for a fuller appreciation. Since she wrote more than seventy novels over nearly sixty years, I knew it was going to be a big undertaking – and I severely underestimated just how big!
It became necessary to group the books in more manageable chunks, but even so, this manuscript is intimidating. I need to do a good bit of editing before a professional editor gets a whack at it.
But editing my writing is only part of the job. Because I’m married to a web developer, his first thought was “This is a data base and would work great as a website.” I sort of get the concept, but to be honest, I’m not entirely clear on how the final product will look because I’m a content writer, not a coder.
What I do know is that for the last few years, I have not documented my work in a way that easily transfers into a data base because, well, why would I? So in addition to editing, I have also been – and I’m probably going to say this wrong – inserting markup in the text so everything displays correctly in a data base. Tedious doesn’t begin to describe it. Since I do this after finishing my day job, my eyes and spine are really regretting so much time spent at the computer.
I planned to publish this book in January of last year to coincide with the 100th anniversary of Christie’s first book, but it took so much longer than I anticipated. Then I was sure I could finish before 2020 ended, but I missed that deadline, too. However, I didn’t miss it by much. The last few entries were completed on January 2 and what a great feeling that was!
In addition to editing, I have to clean up the bibliography and assemble illustrations, none of which is nearly as much fun as the research, but I am getting pretty excited to see this dream finally become reality. So I guess there’s more “yay!” than “boo!” after all.