When I embarked on the mission of writing a novel I never realised that I would end up changing as person because of it. Since I was young I have always dreamed of one day writing a novel and last year with my thirtieth birthday looming on the horizon and an idea rattling around inside my brain I finally sat down and did it. Four months on I had finished the first draft of my novel and had no idea what to do next.
That brings me to the next 10 months. In that time I have picked it up and put it down umpteen times. I have crossed out full stops and later reinstated them. I have changed words once, twice and more. All the while in the back of mind the words ‘it’s impossible to polish shit’ have lingered.
Now I am full of doubts and self loathing. Today I wrote what is essentially the last new scene. The creative element is officially complete. There will be no more new scenes, or paragraphs or anything else for that matter. I feel a mixture of sadness tinged with fear. The fear that I have wasted a great deal of time over the last year.
I told myself at the beginning of this process that I would complete it before I am 30. I will be 31 in just under half a year. I also promised myself that once I complete this I will join the adult world and stop living in my imagination. I am not entirely sure what that entails or how exactly one goes about doing something as brave and reckless as that but I am sure there is a self help book I can purchase on the Internet. A little voice in my head keeps asking me whether that is why I have stretched out and stalled this process for as long as possible. That it is merely an extension of my immaturity. Maybe it’s right. Maybe I have.
What I do know is that come rain or shine I do not regret my attempt to write a novel. I have learnt many things about myself. The most important being a sense of pride in the fact that I have stuck at something and now the end is in sight. Shame it took me thirty years and eighty thousand words to learn it.