The Novel Second Honeymoon

The early phase of writing a book is definitely the honeymoon period. I’m in love with my characters and nothing they do irritates me. This period lasts through the first several revisions. Then, the seven-year itch hits. (Not literally seven years…) During this period, I’m sick of my book, everything my characters do is wrong and sends me over the edge. During this period, I long to kill off even my favorites. Torturing and tormenting them is always at the back of my mind. I’ve reread my book so much that jokes that were funny the first 600 times are now older than Mozart’s Ghost.

Then, just as I’m about to despair, that second honeymoon phase hits. My characters are alive and vital again, the plot is rich, and I’m suddenly graced with a feeling of well-being. This will last until the next round of rejections come back. But, man, it feels good now!

Anyone else experience these marital phases with their manuscripts?



Filed under Writing

3 responses to “The Novel Second Honeymoon

  1. Nope. I don’t bother starting a book unless I know that I’m going to stick with the characters, for better or worse. I always have spells of writer’s fatigue when the words just aren’t coming or a plot point isn’t working out, but wanting to kill off my characters? Never! They’re growing and changing, and I’m glad to see them slowly bloom into three-dimensional people that readers can care about.

  2. Yes, I go through these phases with my novels all the time. We have spats occasionally too.

  3. The spats can be quite fun. 🙂

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