Today I finished the first draft of the fourth installment in my Elemental Series: Fire. As a matter of fact I just finished it about fifteen minutes ago. When I finished I found my husband and held onto him as I cried. This was the hardest book for me to write. It took me the longest amount of time to write of all the other books and it was the most emotionally intense. I’m not sure my imaginary friends will ever speak to me again after what I’ve done to them. My husband hugged me back and asked me if I killed someone and I told him, yes, yes I did.
It seems strange to cry over the death of an imaginary person, but these characters have been a major part of my life for the last four years. I know every minute detail about them. I have been with them through everything, watching them grow, watching them make stupid mistakes. I’ve bled with them and cried with them. I’ve laughed with them and loved with them. To lose one of these characters is really like losing a friend.
I remember reading Laurell K Hamilton’s blog a couple of years ago as she talked about writing through the killing scene of one of her major characters and how she felt like she’d watched a friend die. She walked around in a blue funk for days as she mourned that character. I didn’t really understand it. I understand it now.
I am thrilled the book is done. Part of me laughed as I cried, feeling the joy bubbling inside of me that I finally, finally finished it. But that doesn’t take the shock of the pain away. I knew it was coming, I thought of it, I saw it in my mind, I walked through the details, making sure I knew exactly how and what was going to happen. But it didn’t take the sting away when I typed that last heart breaking word.
I started writing this book last year and I took a break about two-thirds of the way through to go back and work on and edit the earlier books in the series and only came back to writing this book last month. So while there was a long period of time where I didn’t write one word on this book, I still count that time in how long it took to finish. I wasn’t ready to write this ending until now. I almost wish I hadn’t been ready now. But this is writing. It isn’t pretty and it’s incredibly bloody.