Three days ago, I started compiling a list of agents to query. Sadly, I’ve not gone much farther. No, I haven’t given up; it’s nothing as hopeless as that. But, it did get me thinking about this whole novel writing process.
Each task I’ve set out to take on has taken so much longer than I initially anticipated. Oh, I expected a laborious process, for sure, but living it is a little different than knowing it. It’s not all bad though. If I would’ve known the novel would take 2 years to write, I probably wouldn’t have bothered starting it all. (I’ll fill in the unsaid portion of this sentence now: because I’m lazy and I don’t bother with long shots, like finishing a novel, finding an agent and getting it published).
For me, the only purpose of an estimate is to pacify my impatience. I’m less likely to get frustrated with myself for not being done after 3 months when I can look and see my realistic time frame was 8 months.
In retrospect, it was rather ambitious (silly) of me to think I’d be ready to query after only a few days of research. My new query goal is Halloween. 2011.
I made up a formula to help me estimate how long it might take me to finish novel #2 *:
Here’s a shortcut that also works: (estimated hours) x 2.55
* Disclaimer – I am not liable for any injury resulting from head shaking, hair pulling, inaccurate time lines or any other distress caused directly or indirectly by the use of the above formulas. I am NOT a mathematician…I am a psychology degree holder who still counts on my fingers.
I’m confident that estimation skills get better with practice. Can anyone confirm if that’s the case? You can lie, if you want to 😉