I just finished my second draft of my novel today. Yay!
It took me a lot longer than I thought to edit the middle chapters, mostly because there was a lot of rewriting to do there, and I let that discourage me. I froze. I procrastinated. I did everything but push through.
In the end the solution was pretty simple:
I made a plan and set a goal to finish the edit (about 75,000 words to go through) by the end of February. Instead of having a word count for how much I wrote, I had a word count for how much I edited. Instead of counting up (how many words left to write), I counted down (how many words left to edit).
I cut the larger goal to a word count goal for each day, and almost every day I managed to surpass my 1,200 “words edited” goal. I only missed two days for personal reasons, and I missed my daily goal only four times, on exceptionally busy days.
I tracked my progress in a Google sheet, with the following graph illustrating my progress:
I also managed to cut down my manuscript by 10%, which was another goal for my second draft, and a much more challenging one that I originally thought. It was worth doing, though, as the resulting narrative is better, tighter, and easier to read.
For my next draft I’m going to create a plan from the start, so that hopefully I won’t get bogged down again by my inner demons.