“Small Steps”: the last tango
1 1/2 years of writing work.
479 pages of script.
Today, the tango sessions of “Small Steps” have come to a close: the A draft is done.
Wrapping up a novel is a strange experience, and it isn’t any less rare the third time around. There is the relief about having come through and having succeeded in bringing such a big project to a close. There is the sensation of vertigo and of being strangely airborne now that the responsibility of writing and the characters whose voices have inhabited your mind for so long start to fade away and leave you strangely devoid of mental luggage. And there is the sadness of having reached the end of such a journey and having to let go of the characters and writing patterns and the imprints they both have left on your everyday life.
Yet here I am, once again, and most likely not for the last time.
So, what will happen next?
As far as “Small Steps” is concerned, the A draft will be edited (and possibly be uploaded to var[title]) since the story is, much like the two previous novels, ultimately intended for publication. When and if that will happen is yet to be determined. As most of you may know, I still have a Ph.D. dissertation to finish and I have vowed to myself that any intents of publishing (also for “Campus” and “Jungle Fever”) will have to wait until after my defense (which should happen at some point later this year).
It also means that I will not embark on a new novel (even though I already have a storyboard waiting in my nightstand drawer) until after I hand in my thesis script. There may be some short story or some genuine fan fiction (I haven’t forgotten that I promised a contribution to the Marina/Esther fandom) in the meantime, but big projects are on hold until the Ph.D. madness is over.
I’ll keep you updated on all fronts, of course, and hope to be back with the journey of a new novel before too long.
For now, all that is left for me to do is to thank those who have accompanied me on this A draft adventure and whose thoughts, comments, support and feedback have made this journey anything but a lonesome travel. Thank you, each and every one of you, for your presence, for both your patience and your impatience, and for your unwavering interest in the story.
If I have accidentally inspired anyone to pick up tango lessons, all the better – we might cross paths at the salóns and milongas across this planet eventually.
Be well, and until the next story!
updated April 7th 2010: For reasons of editing, I have withdrawn the A draft of “Small Steps” from mi@rroba. An edited version should emerge sooner or later (either as a book or as a web version).