The book is finished!
You know. The first draft, anyway.
I wanted to finish over the weekend so I could devote my attention to some other things this week (*cough* cartoons *cough*), and I pushed myself to sit in that chair and bang out the last 8,000 words or so on Saturday. I'm a fast writer and 8,000 words is usually not that big a deal, but they were 8,000 VERY HARD-WON WORDS because I was writing one of the most emotional parts of the book.
And the confrontation is different from the last time.
When I wrote this book for the first time as one volume, more than ten years ago, it had much more distant narration and felt a little more like a fairy tale (though it was still in first person). The big clash of the book was showier, with more cartoon villain pompousness and more drama. But when I rewrote this book as a series and brought Delia down to Earth, she became much more nuanced and complicated, and I knew there was no way she would do the things I wrote about her doing in the original.
Even considering that, I was kind of surprised what a mess she was at the end of this book. She had a few impressive strokes of bravery, but mostly she did a lot of cowering and cringing and doubting herself. Still, she's a powerful person and it shows. And I really liked bringing her face to face with her childhood enemy.
Which of course is to say I hated it, too.
I wonder about how my readers will take it, though. You don't see Beatrice until the end of this book, but you do see Delia sulking and raging about her here and there throughout the build of the story, and if you haven't read the first book then you might get some feeling like she's a Big Bad or something. I don't think she really delivers as a villain opposed to Delia, though that's kind of the role she plays (even though most people in Delia's life perceive her as the villain). I wonder if people will find their confrontation disappointing.
Maybe. But I'm not writing this so I can just repeat the same tired tropes.
So I'm officially done with my first draft and I guess that means I'm technically graduated to editing now. But I'm going to let it rest this week (not only because I'm, er, busy, but because that's usually a good idea with creative works when you want to come back to them fresh), and I'll see about massaging it and sending it to test readers after that. And then my agent will finally get to read it! Huzzah.
It kinda feels good but also kinda feels weird too. I'm planning to do some other artistic things this week (maybe a cartoon music video, definitely some baking, and probably some art), and maybe once the Bad Fairy book is out to test readers I'll start drafting my next one. It's been baking for a while and it might be ready to come out of the oven.