At the beginning of this year, I had hoped to have my manuscript edited by March 1st. Life, as it tends to, interfered, and writing doesn't particularly like following a plan either, so that didn't happen.
In search of a new, reasonable time frame, I decided I wanted to finish revising before my balloons – the ones celebrating the completion of my first draft – fully deflated. This did happen.
At 76,276 words, my manuscript is now ready to progress to its next stage: being printed for a round of editing on paper. Five standard balloons lay listless on the floor, but two foil balloons remain as an unflinching reminder of accomplishment and the motivation to continue following this path through.