It has been a long time in coming, but today I finished the first draft of my fantasy novel, Aral-Kahn. I conceived of the story months ago, but it took me that many more months to get the thing started and then several more months to actually finish it. But now, 96,000+ words later, it’s sitting in my hard drive, finished. Well, draft one anyway. There will be several more to come, and then after that a sequel with several drafts and another sequel with several drafts.
But that doesn’t matter right now, because draft one of Aral-Kahn is done! As you can tell, I’m just a teensy bit excited. For the longest time, I had myself convinced that I couldn’t do a novel, that I was a short story writer only. Sure, writing novellas is fun (and something I intend to continue doing), but it didn’t quite do the trick. I wanted to write novels. And not just any novels, but big bombastic fantasy novels. But they never panned out. In the last twelve years or so, I only wrote one completed draft of a novel, and that was back in sixth grade. The rest were all false starts, ideas too big to manage that wound up collapsing in on themselves like the literary equivalent of a black hole.
But now I have written one. It might not be bombastic, but it is certainly big in terms of theme and action. And it works structurally speaking. More or less. There are a lot of kinks to work out, but so it is with any first draft. What is more, I have a whole pile of ideas for different novels. One is an epic fantasy that plays with apocalyptic and Christian themes, another an urban fantasy series about a group of monster hunters, and finally a straight horror novel–a good old fashioned ghost story.
So lots of ideas and lots more work ahead of me. But today I’m going to kick back and relax, because I’m a guy with two thumbs and a finished first draft :).