For a good chunk of the past year, I've been working full time on my young adult novel. This month, I finally finished the manuscript and started to submit it to agents and publishers. The reception has been warm thus far, and I'm happy to see my hard work pay off.
Writing a book was one of the most challenging and gratifying experiences I've ever had. Wrestling with the language, plot, and characters felt like entering a magical world of my own making, a world where I had godlike control over the people, places, and events. Of course, with such power comes great responsibility. In order to stay true to the story and its themes, I had to be vigilant about everything from word choice to character arcs. Figuring out the complex plot, with so many layered characters, was like solving a hundred-thousand-piece jigsaw puzzle. It was incredibly difficult at times, but I have never before felt so connected to a piece of work.
I'm proud of the novel, but now that it's finished I'm eager to return to my other love, digital media production. Over the past year, I've truly missed working with teams of people. Writing a book was a lonely sport and I am a social creature. I often wished I was back in an office or studio environment, working towards a set of objectives with other people, sharing successes and challenges, and seeing the fruits of collaborative work. I also missed visual media. Sure, playing with language all day was fun, but I do love graphics, and I'll be happy to be working on visual projects again.
I learned a lot over the past year. On the personal level, I learned how to take on a massive individual project, respecting the long process involved. On a practical level, I learned a lot about story construction, finding my voice, and writing for an audience. These are skills that will be incredibly helpful in all my future jobs, whether they be production, animation, or writing.
Now, I'm entering the job market again and looking forward to sharing my adventures with you!