I created this mailing list back in 2017 when I posted an early draft of Chapter I on my website. At the time, I intended to send regular updates about the book’s progress, but that never really happened.
The main reason for my lack of correspondence was that I hadn’t had a lot to share, that is until recently. I’ve spent the majority of the past three years with my head down writing. While that laser focus helped make significant progress with the book, it doesn’t lend itself to fascinating updates.
I’m happy to report that I finally have more to share with all of you. Over the past year, I’ve made a ton of process on this project, from I hiring an editor, to nailing down the story, to receiving positive feedback from some early readers. There is way too much for me to cover in a single update, but I plan to send out monthly emails to fill you in on the progress I’ve made, and what I am currently working on.
I’d also like to know what you would be interested in hearing about? There is so much I could talk about in these updates, from current events to how story structure has helped me make sense of my past, that I’m not entirely where to focus.
If you have a minute, hit reply and let me know aspects of turning my life into a story you would like to hear about.
One recent development that I would like to tell you about relates to the feedback I’ve received over the past three months. Back in April, I asked 20 or so generous people, many of whom are on this email, to critique the first 12 chapters of my latest draft. While I’ve shared versions of the book before, this draft is a little bit different because I wrote it based on the work I did with my editor last summer. While I liked how the story was taking shape, I was a little nervous to see if they would like it too. It turns out I had nothing to worry about.
Overall the feedback was extremely positive. A highlight for me was when a friend was describing how a particular chapter made her feel, and I exclaimed, “Yes! That’s exactly how I felt as it was happening.” One of the reasons I started this crazy project was because, as these events where happening, I often had a hard time sharing what I was going through with family and friends. So, to get this type of reaction from my book makes me feel confident in the story’s direction and structure.
If you were not an early reader and would like to check out the first three chapters of my book, you can download a PDF here.
After taking a few months off from writing, I am getting back to it. I’m currently working on implements some of the feedback from my early readers, then digging into Chapters 13 - 24. This section of the book starts in 2000, when I began college at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, and ends when I quit my first job in 2006. Working on the story in chunks like this makes writing a bit easier because the story takes place over 19 years, and this allows me to focus on a specific period.
I plan to write until November when I hopefully will have completed a manuscript draft of the entire novel. After that, I will have to figure out how to publish this book. I've got some ideas about that topic, which I'll save for another update.
These are crazy and difficult times for all of us. I wish you the best, and I hope that you and your family are doing well.
Stay safe, and I’ll see you next month!