I've been working on Unleashed! for nearly 5 years.
That's a long time to be working on a single story. In my defense, I had no real writing experience. I needed to learn how to tell a story. Everything, up until now, has been through hands-on learning. Critique groups, ANWA meetings, articles, pod casts, videos, more articles, reading other's work, then reading more books about writing. I've fluctuated from 50,000 - 125,000 words, and everywhere in between, so many times, I have whiplash.
But, you know what? I wouldn't trade it for the world. This journey has had enough highs and lows to qualify as a world-class roller coaster ride. But that's the beauty of it.
As a child, people would ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wasn't really sure, but I knew I didn't want to be bored. I figured I'd be a firefighter, or go into the military, or maybe even SWAT. I never imagined I'd find my excitement sitting at a desk for hours at a time.
In my imagination, I can flit from a romance novel, to a comedy, to an action flick, then into a world of fantasy, all without skipping a beat. What am I in the mood for? Let's create it!
I may have authored 19 different drafts of the very same story, but each one is unique in it's own way, building my characters from a one-dimensional concept, to a three-dimensional person a reader can connect to, root for, and laugh with.
Have I mastered this writing thing yet? Not by a long shot. But by golly, I'm having fun figuring it out.