Aside from a futile quest to find someplace to eat a sit-down breakfast and the afternoon distraction of a History Channel special on the flag raisers of Iwo Jima, I spent the entirety of Sunday on Chapter 1 of my thesis. And it was a terrific experience. The act of revising is something I have missed, for it’s during revision that we begin to glimpse the true depths of the piece we’re working on. Only then, when you’ve had an opportunity to step back from it and re-see the work, do you begin to understand how the whole thing works, how it all comes together.
Now, I still have the problem that I need to pick up the pace. I can’t just keep doing a chapter a day, or else I’ll never make my deadline. But, that being said, the prologue and the first chapter were two of the three sections that needed the most work. From here on in, the rest of the book has less total reworking needed.
I’m figuring that on Monday, since it’s a holiday and I don’t have to work, I’ll be able to get through chapters two and three, and maybe four. Chapters two and three are relatively short, and I can’t see expanding them all that much. Chapter four needs some material cut from it, and the later revelatory moments need to be built up to better, but it’s in better shape than chapter one was.
It’s all just very exciting, this work of mine. I’m starting to feel as if I have a real novel on my hands, as if, when I’m finished with it, there might actually be a publisher out there—a small publisher, to be sure—who might take a chance on it. That’s a really exciting feeling.
Now, back to work.