Friday, April 2, 2010

The Devil You Don't Know is finished!

The massive re-write of The Devil You Don't Know is finished and I'm wiped out.

I worked more than nine hours today without a break and finished a few minutes ago (shortly after 8 p.m.).

I don't know if it's publishable, but I do know it's as good as I can possibly make it. I left it all on the page -- every damned ounce of talent I have. Whether it's good enough remains to be seen, but I can honestly say I worked harder on this than on anything in my entire life.

It took more than two years to write (with an eight-month break for the Congressional campaign during which I wrote nothing) and three months to completely rewrite and revise it. I've been through the manuscript so many times I literally know every word by heart.

I never want to read it again. But I sure hope others do.

Early next week, I'm going to have four copies printed for me at Kinko's. And those will be going to the beta readers I've chosen. Two more electronic versions are going to my alpha readers -- my wife and my father-in-law, both of whom read it and critiqued it before the revisions.

If anyone really wants to read an electronic version, and is willing to give me honest feedback, let me know. I'm not sure how smart that is, and I don't want to send it to just anyone, but ask and I'll certainly consider it. I think I've covered myself enough on this blog and elsewhere on the Internet that it won't be difficult to prove it's mine.

Provided, of course, that it's worth stealing! :)

Sorry to be rambling, but I'm really tired and, oddly enough, a little emotional. I cannot believe I did this. I wrote a fucking novel! Wow.

If I can do it, anyone can do it.


  1. Congrats, Terry! I'm sure it feels a bit like a weight has been lifted.

    Until you wake up tomorrow and feel you have to go over it again, just in case. :-)

  2. No! I'm done for real this time, unless of course someone finds something egregious in the manuscript.

    Thanks for the congrats! :)

  3. Congratulations! That is something to be unbelievably proud of. All good vines and energy are cingular your way. Way to go Terry!

  4. This comment has been removed by the author.

  5. Sorry. I'm typing from the iPhone. Vines=vibes and Cingular=coming

  6. WOO HOO! Congrats, Terry. Now get it out there and get it published!

  7. And the crowd goes wild! I'd be happy to read it if you want an honest opinion.

  8. Gulp.I was afraid someone would take me up on the offer. ;)

    Kristy, if you really have the time and inclination, shoot me an e-mail at and I'll send it to you.

    Gina, I'm going to send one to you, too. I know you're busy, but if you get the chance to read through it, then please do.

    I'm going to bed right now, and this weekend is nuts, so it will probably be Monday when it send it.

    Thanks guys.

  9. Congratulations. Your timeline and mine sound almost the same and I know I felt the exact same way as you... I never wanted to read it again once I'd finished. LOL. Best of luck with the querying process.

  10. Wow! Congratulations, Terry! That is so cool, be careful sending things out and about. Take it from someone who's had several ideas stolen through the years. I'm waiting to read it when it's either in a bookstore or online! I'm really excited for you!

  11. Way to go, Terry! I'm so thrilled for you!

    I hope to post similar news myself - in the not too distant future.

    You are an inspiration to me and many others. It can be done :)

  12. CONGRATS on being 'finished'. Woot! Doesn't it feel good?! Full of the awesome!

    But...I hope you realize that (if you have really good betas) that there are ALWAYS things that can be improved. And after you have some distance from it, and get back your betas copies, you will most likely be revising and polishing a bit more.
    And, WHEN you agent wants a few more tweaks before s/he puts it on submission...there will be a bit more polishing.
    And WHEN a publisher buys it, the editor may want a few MORE tweaks.

    Just mentally preparing you.

    No matter what, YOU DID IT!

    Great blog! I'm gonna stick around, if you don't mind.

  13. Lola,
    Unfortunately, I know you're right. Even though this was the seventh go-through (and a major one at that after a book editor went through it), I know there will be more. And more after that.

    I just like kidding myself that it's done. That way, I can sleep at night! ;)

  14. Oh, and WELCOME! I'm glad you're here.

  15. It's funny how down you can feel after you finish a novel, isn't it? I'm the same way; it's almost like I don't ever want to be done, because the writing part of it is so much fun.

    Sidebar: I love the title. I'm already curious about the book.

  16. Hi, Terry. Congrats on the revision.

    This science fiction/fantasy critique website is highly recommended by some literary agents:

    Jim Butcher (Dresden Files) and some other well-known writers came out of the site. It costs $49 a year, is password protected, you retain all rights, and you can put your stuff up and take it down when you want. You have to review the works of others in exchange for the rights to post your own material, and you can post up to three pieces at a time.

    I'm in the middle of a massive revision (also after an editor went through my manuscript), and to be honest with you, the OWW site is fantastic for feedback.

    Good luck!

    -- Holly