After an exhausting weekend of work, I delivered the requested chapter breakdown and sample chapter to Publisher X yesterday. Things were a little hairy, due to an unplanned overindulgence of wine on Saturday night, and the resulting hangover on Sunday, but we got there in the end.
Writing the outline of a novel I haven’t yet penned was an odd experience, to say the least. You have to remember that everything you’re committing to paper, the publisher will expect to see in a final draft, should you be lucky enough to be commissioned. They’re buying the idea, and expect the end product to match what you claim will be there when you pitch. As such, you have to avoid at all costs the temptation to write unrealistic material to get the plot out of a hole. If you put it on the page at this stage, you’d better be prepared to write it out in full later.
In the end, the outline I came up with is one I hope the publisher is intrigued by, because the novel is one I badly want to write. The paycheque would be nice too, but ultimately I quite like the people and world I ended up describing, and hope to be able to spend some writing time there.
It’s out of my hands now, though. The next thing I hear will be either a rejection, or a commission. I shall attempt not to spend the intervening time, which could be days, weeks, or months, pacing a groove into the floor. Before this opportunity came up, I was editing a novel, Thy Fearful Symmetry. I shall distract myself with that, I think.