Khattam Shud means "it is finished" in Hindustani, one of the few useful things I learned from Haroun and the Sea of Stories (apart from the quote: "The world is not for fun! The world is for Comptrolling!" [I plan to shout that at someone I'm micromanaging someday. The books I read in school...]). The Tinkers is finished. With a completely awful synopsis on the "My Novels" page, and 59,500 words of prose, the first draft is done. I finished it on Tuesday, along with winning Camp (with 28 spaces to spare). It's been hard. I was at the point on my story where I really didn't know where I was going, and it took a lot to sit down every day and keep writing, hoping that Dem would work himself out of trouble. For the most part, it worked.
Once The Tinkers was done, I realized that I really like writing novels. And I had no idea what to write next. So, one inspired-poem and two half-baked short stories later (including a modern-day fairy-tale--two words: gingerbread apartments), I've realized that I'm stuck. For the next four weeks or so, I will not be working on any novels. I want to, but I know I've got to take a break. Patience for most things has never been my strong suit, though.
Writing novels is incredible. Sitting down every day or so and pouring out a story, filling it with adventures, your deepest thoughts, personality traits you may not have realized you have. Making your characters go on a journey and find themselves until they are so real you're surprised they don't really exist. (And wishing they did.) For me, this never happens with short stories. As much as I may try, and ultimately enjoy them, it's never the same. And I just really love Dem as a character.
Overall, I'm happy. I've guided new characters through a world "laced with sharp-edged medical equipment, needles to inject you, syringes to fill your skin with poison." (Yep, I'm quoting my own first draft here.) I learned about their endearing quirks, how they all embody parts of my personality, some more than others. Most of them survived. I have 60,000 more words written than I did a few months ago, and a science-fictiony dystopia that I love, at least. That's something, right? Now if only it wasn't so rough around the edges.