So, today, I can call myself a novel writer, because I have, in fact, written a whole novel of 84K words with a plot, character development, and a romantic through line.

That said, I’m not done with my novel, not by any stretch of the imagination. The ending needs work (I put an ending on paper because I needed somewhere to start, not because it’s ready for primetime) and the transitions could use tweaking, and there are DEFINITELY copy-edits aplenty, but it’s DONE and I’m a novel writer.

I’m insanely excited about this because I’ve been working on Necessity for a while now and it’s been eating my brain.

So, what next? Well, I put Necessity in a drawer (or in this case close the Scrivener project) and let it sit there for a little bit. I have some friends reading the alpha and giving me feedback (which is really mostly encouragement so far, and that helps a TON). And then I get to start my next brainworm.

One of the things that got me to push straight through to the end is the fact that I got inspiration for characters and a setting. This story is set in the Vanir home world that I’ve been musing on. A place that has a society split into the above and below with floating cities and a wild natural land. Their magic is very personal and they tend toward control, control of their shape, control of their bodily processes, control of their world through sympathetic magics. That’s why I want to set a circus there. A group of those that don’t fit into the normal society, too above cultured for the wilderness, too other for the controlled cities. This is my reward for finishing my first novel, a second one (and a third, and a fourth after that).

In a couple weeks I’ll pick Necessity back up, start polishing the edges off of the transitions, fix the magical power that I reconsidered halfway through, tweak the foreshadowing so that the end feels more fulfilling, and nudge the end until it doesn’t feel so disjointed. Oh, yeah, and put in more Wolf so my A#1 alpha reader doesn’t try to murder me in my sleep when she comes to visit over Labor Day.