Friday 12th May 2017

*ALERT* *ALERT* The Edits Are Back *ALERT* *ALERT*
Yes, folks, we’re on Defcon 1 here as I have received a large chunk of my editorial notes from my agent today.  Oh, can you smell the fear?
On one hand I’m really excited to get them back.  These notes are a fantastic way for me to level up my writing.  Working with one of the best agents in the industry is a remarkable privilege and allows me to stretch my talent.  These edits will show me my bad habits as a writer and areas where I can improve.
But, and let’s be honest about this, there’s fear.  Real genuine fear.  I’m about to go and chase tornadoes, and that’s a walk in the park to this.  Because, this is where I need to step up, to push myself, to grow.  And with that comes doubt.  I found my last draft really hard,  I gave the first structural edits everything I could, and to then find out I needed to do more, whilst not a surprise, did make me question whether I had it in me to write at that level.
I’ve done a lot of personal development work to try and ensure that doesn’t happen again.  I feel I took too long on the last draft.  I’m going to make sure it doesn’t happen on this draft.  But for all my bravado… the real question I have to ask myself is: have I done enough to truly know I’m up for this?
These are the moments in the journey where shit gets real, where that patience pays off, where a dream that felt so intangible and far off, feels real and solid.
This is my moment to shine.
The thing is, these things come out the blue.  You’re sitting there being busy with your vlogging and your packing ahead of your trip, and then there’s that email.  You’re patient because it’s a big book and takes a long time to go through, and you’re so appreciative that someone – anyone even – would invest this much time in your aims.  Yeah, you can be cynical and say it’s commercially driven… but I’m humble enough to know there are a lot of other great writers out there.  So you wait, happy for it to take as long as it needs.  But then it comes, a new milestone in this incredible journey, and you’re filled with emotion.
It came in what has proved to be a very busy day.  Today was my last day with the day job before going away.  From here on out (or at least until June), it’s all about the storm chasing.  Something I was waiting on came through today and so I won’t need to go and visit other offices when I get back.  Just as well as I need a way to figure how to take another 2 weeks off so I can get these edits done.
I did a lot of work on the laptop this evening.  I love the lightness of the Macbook Air but the 120gb hard drive is murder.  I had to do a lot of fiddling to free up some space.  And then I had to work out how to install DVDs when the thing has no DVD drive.  I got it worked out in the end, but it took most of my evening.
I now only need to decide whether I install Microsoft Word or not, so I can read the tracked changes whilst I’m away.
My plan is that I’ll use the trip as time to think about what needs to be done / psyche myself up for the next draft ready for when I get back.  I’ll tell you now, there will be some hardcore editing in June.  I want to get this next edit done fast.  Thoroughly, but fast.
The weather was very changeable today.  It cleared up this afternoon but the clouds were very tumultuous and so I did another timelapse this evening.  I’ve not had chance to look at the shots but I think it’s going to be a real test for my timelapse process.  I can spend some time tomorrow figuring it all out as I’ve got nothing planned except washing.
Which is just as well as for some reason I got majorly behind on everything.  It was one of those days where you felt you hadn’t stopped but weren’t sure what it was that you’d actually done.  Heck I’ve not had chance to give more than a casual look at the editorial notes summary and that was only after gone midnight.
I think events at work caused me to forget about The Climb and so I got to gone 6pm and suddenly realised that I hadn’t edited or posted it.  Likewise, the vlog (which to be fair was over 30 mins long) took me up until midnight to complete.
I just hope the bits I filmed here and there were enough to make for a good vlog tomorrow.  I intend to start editing early tomorrow just in case.
I’ve started being more active looking at the weather models for Chasepalooza.  As I’ve mentioned, the further out the forecast the more inaccurate it’s likely to be, but it’s always a good idea to look at the models each day and seeing if they radically change from data run to data run or whether they seems to be finalising into a pattern.
Annoyingly, next week is looking good for extreme weather, and whilst I’ll be on the continent, we don’t start actually chasing until the Friday.  And where we were hoping that the early start to the season would push things north, it’s currently looking very likely we’ll be driving all the way to Texas.
Even so, I’m still super excited about this trip.  As I explained in yesterday’s vlog , I think I need a quieter chase this year, and so being away from the main action might not be a bad thing.  The people I’m chasing with are such great people that even if we had blue skies every day it will still be an awesome laugh and an adventure.  I’m so looking forward to it, however it turns out.
But it means that on the road, not only will I be writing The Climb, filming and editing different vlogs, but I’ll also be thinking about these edits.
My agent tells me that this is the bit where the novel gets fun.  As if I wasn’t excited enough already.
I will take a hard look tomorrow at them and see what I’m letting myself in for.
If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels.  Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.

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