The second draft of Consequences is officially complete. I was originally figuring a cut of about 5,000 words or so, but it didn't actually lose that much. It actually ended up just shy of 83,000 words. Still well within the average length for the genre, so I'm not overly concerned. Still, it's nice to have it finished.
Not that I'm done with it, of course.
Next up, a third draft. I added some scenes and rewrote some others, so now I get to see how badly I screwed those up. Also, I'll be working on some changes suggested by my beta readers that I thought were valid and worth consideration. Finally, I'll be paying close attention to pacing and continuity to make sure the story flows like it should without anything too distracting creeping in to pull readers out of it.
I won't be starting on that immediately, since I want to give my brain a chance to reset after the first round of edits. Too many things are still overly familiar right now, so I wouldn't be able to do it justice. Combine that with some things in my day job that are going to demand more of my attention, and it wouldn't be a pretty result.
Still, I'm on track with my initial timeline here, so I'm not in bad shape. If things work out the way I hope, the third draft should be finished by the end of next month at the latest. Once that's done, I'll give it a couple days to settle then start formatting it for submission and / or self-publication. While I'm doing that, I'll do one more close inspection, tweaking whatever still needs it so it can truly be labeled a Final Draft.
The formatting process will take a while. Different publishers want different things, so I may end up with several versions of the same draft. The eBook version for example will look a bit different than the submission version.
Why do all that work if a publisher's just going to reformat it again? Simple. If I don't get a publisher to bite, I want to be ready to commission cover art and get it to CreateSpace / KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing) and SmashWords as soon as the artwork's ready. This one's going into the wild, one way or the other.
Either way, traditional publisher or self-published, I can confidently say the release date will be 2016. Once I know which way I'm going, I can narrow that down a little more. If it goes the traditional route, the eBook will be out first (probably), with print edition following a few months later (based on the schedule of my preferred publisher right now). They might be simultaneous, but don't hold your breath. If it's self-published, the release date will be the same for both. Print versions will be POD (Print on Demand), but based on other books I've seen published through CreateSpace, they look just as good as anything else on the market. Yes, I'm going through an Amazon company which means the eBook will only be on Kindle, but don't worry. I may use SmashWords to get the other eReader formats, but even if I don't you can find out online how to convert a Kindle book to any format you want to. No, I'm not telling here. That would be a whole other post. But the information's there, if you look for it.
Now that this post has gone twice as long as I thought it would, I'll sign off. Hopefully Demon at the Window will get a First Draft Complete update within the next week, and then it's off to the next project. See you soon!