So when’s your novel coming out? I’ve heard that question more times than I care to count. My answer: one step at a time.
To write a novel is to run the marathon, devote countless hours slogging away through draft after draft, learning to live with characters you may or may not like, living in a place that may feel uncomfortable after two or more years. But it’s done a page at a time.
My MFA thesis was the novel manuscript, “Home at the Lincoln Hotel,” which I brought to graduate school in uneven shape. The storyline is the result of the what-if game. I built on the world I knew, or thought I knew, as a child, invented people, places, dialog, scenes…you writers know what I’m talking about. Before long the manuscript became a living entity of sorts.
At Stonecoast the entire piece was cut apart, workshopped, read aloud, and critiqued under the watchful guidance of four outstanding mentors, one of whom still dreams of “checking into the Lincoln Hotel” at a bookstore some day. I hope she gets to do that, as do many other readers.
In the meantime I’ve placed by ninth segment as a short story. “Church Camp” is coming out in the print version of Fresh! Magazine this summer. It will join a nationwide cadre of other excerpts-turned-stories in Colere of Iowa, Rockhurst Review in Missouri, Southern Women’s Review in Alabama (two issues), Lavanderia New American Press Anthology in California, MoonShine Review of North Carolina, Wazee Journalin Colorado, Pinion Journal of Virginia and most Fresh! in Massachusetts.
Yes, this novel is being published one step at a time.