The Twelve Year Novel Revisited

This past summer, I went into great detail on my blog site about my long unfinished novel, Such a Dreamer, and the journey and reasons why—after twelve years since its inception—I had still not completed it. If you didn’t get to read this three part series, which will give you insights into my creative process and some of my theories on writing, you can check it out on my dedicated blog site, Nothing Like We Imagined:

The Twelve Year Novel: Part 1Part 2Part 3

I believe that in some way blogging about my struggles to finish Dreamer gave me the inspiration and motivation that I needed to complete the first draft, which happened back on August 25, 2011. Typing in that final period forced my throat to constrict and brought tears to my eyes. Writing is an emotional and personal experience to an author. Considering that I’ve drug around the characters and scenes of Dreamer for over 12 years—let them torture me, haunt me, and become such a part of my life that I could barely separate fact from fiction—I’m surprised that my office didn’t transform into a pond of tears upon Dreamer’s completion.

This is what twelve years looks like on paper!

This is what twelve years looks like on paper!

In September, I printed out the double-spaced, 89,000 word novel, and began the tedious process of revising her. A stack of 359 pages stared at me, but I kept the momentum going. I hand-edited the entire manuscript with pen and ink and then transcribed my notations back into the Word document. I completed the first full revision this past Sunday (January 27th,) reducing the word count to 83,500.

Now I begin the intimidating process of seeking representation! I realize that I haven’t talked much about the concept or plot of Such a Dreamer, so here’s a teaser:

Shortly after his mother’s suicide, twenty year old Dane Whitmore leaves the home of his wealthy, albeit abusive and philandering, father and relocates to South Florida. After losing his job at a home for troubled teenage girls, Dane, a philanthropist by heart, takes his passion for helping others to the streets. He lands a job managing an escort service, where he foolishly believes he can help the escorts find a better life. When a series of troubling events puts Dane in a position where he nearly takes the life of another man, he finally confronts his past, which opens the gateway to healing, forgiveness, and love.



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9 Responses to The Twelve Year Novel Revisited

  1. Rita Malie says:

    WOW! Sounds pretty provocative. Good luck with it.

  2. Wummer says:

    I’m proud of you Jay!. It took such commitment from you to get Such a Dreamer completed. I still have the original copies from those early years when you started her. I remember helping out with ideas you would bounce off me and would read the chapters and give you my opinions. I for one will be happy to finally be able to read and see how Dane’s life turns out! I’m excited for you and love you! You biggest fan, Wummer

    • Jeff says:

      🙂 Thank you, Wummer!! And thanks for being one of my idea bouncers and first readers. Writers certainly need reassurance on projects such as this, and your support and feedback was always welcomed, needed, and appreciated during the past twelve years. And will continue to be. I love you too!!

  3. deb reilly says:

    Congratulations, Jeff. Looking forward to Dreamer’s launch!

  4. What an accomplishment! Congratulations! You’ve taught me that revising and editing are the hardest parts of being a writer and you’ve persevered. Inspirational.

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