I'm still sticking to the author's rules for getting published. As noted, I've successfully completed the steps that got me to picking a working title for my novel, and submitting (and having accepted) the academic article about our medical mission to China.
The next step (in chronological order of accomplishment, of course) was to keep writing the novel. To this end, I've successfully harnessed the idleness of one who was ill enough to actually get admitted to a hospital for 5 days. During my hiatus from reality, I managed to put down about 4600 words, which equates to about two chapters, or 20 typed pages. These weren't just any random 4600 words, either. Major plot points happened. Hannah went to Emil's wake where she found out secrets about Garrett that he didn't share/neglected to share, which throws her whole life into a tailspin. Never mind the fact that he kissed her.
Of course, I think these things are fascinating and, of course, spectacularly written, but... it's entirely possible that it all sucks. So, according to the rules, the next step is to have someone critique the work. To this end, I've joined Scribophile, an online critique group, and have posted chapters 1 and 2 on the site for critique. Whereas my mom gives really great, honest critiques (she tells me when she thinks some parts suck), we do think awfully alike, so I've put myself out there and have my fanny hanging in the breeze on Scibophile hoping not to get spanked too badly.
It's time for Marc and Hannah to walk down the aisle, and this is the major climax of the book. I'm going to have to really take my time and get this right, so I'm going to let my posted writings sit on Scribophile for a while and go back to the paper and pen (which is working for me right now). The next chapter is waiting in the wings of my mind, ready to take form in words.
And when I get bored or frustrated, I'll go back to researching the agents that will be at the Writer's Digest conference in January. (This is under the rules about finding an agent so you can get published. Very important for when the book is actually finished.) If it's going to be worth the money, I'm going to have to finish this novel and start to get it polished. My goal is to pitch it in January, and if anyone buys my pitch, they're probably going to want to read it. And the rules say, don't pitch it if it isn't finished.
So, for now, I'm right where I think I need to be, until I read another article with another rule that I know I'm not following. Did I mention the rule about having a Twitter account? I have one, and I follow lots of people, but other than that, I'm not sure what to do about it. I just don't see the fascination. I'm much more of a Facebook girl myself.