This is the second snow day for the kids – it just keeps coming down! It’s beautiful and fun to be home and cozy. I feel very grateful that our power is on, we have food to eat, and family around.

Yes, that Finish Line in the heading means I’ve reached it with my new book! Well, I’m INCHES away. I just printed out what I hope is the second-to-last version of it where I do what I call “top level” revising – a final read-through to make sure the scenes I changed or added in the last revision hold together and make sense, a double-check of the chronology, then a read-through with my checklist (sensory and setting details, strong action verbs, tightening, polishing and so on).

I’m calling it ROCK ON and am very excited about it. Let’s all cross our fingers that my agent and publisher love it. I can’t believe I’m this close – finally!

The best thing about it is that I’ve shown myself I can finish a book in less than a year. If I go back to the origins of the original book and I think I started playing around with it in the summer of 2007, then started writing it late 2007/ early 2008 and handed it over to my group in November 2008. So that was almost a year and a half. Then I started completely over in January 2009, which means it took me 10 months! True I had the basis for a character and I pulled in a few scenes from the first book, but it’s basically a brand new book and I wrote it in 10 months.

My new goal is to finish my next book in 6-8 months. Can I do it? I think I can if I plan it out in more detail before sitting down to write. I’ve already know the characters and the main story problem and I’m determined to write the ending before I begin to help guide me.