My Life As a Book Cover (4)

I think this would be a rad book cover. I’m totally this guy right now: A dopey-grinned, coffee-drunk, cartoon penguin. Mmmmmmmm.

I have finally finished the…let’s call it…the Landing Zone draft. The one where you know the story is finally in place. For me this one took three false starts. I’d get 45,000 words or so into it, and think to myself, nope, I don’t really care how much my main character has suffered. This is not right! I’d think on it for days, weeks even. Then I’d start again and go for 45,000 words, and the same thing would happen. Again for a third time, the same thing. Apparently for me, the fourth time is the charm.

How long did it take for me to get to this point? Well, I wrote this post back in October of 2009, indicating I was starting to put some pieces of the plot together. So that’s fifteen months. Present word count: 50,500. That equals 200 pages on the mark. It’s actually slimmer than I’d envisioned, so maybe when she’s all polished up, she be a little fuller. And if not, that’s fine too. I’m happy with her.

It’s always a bit strange, and a lot of fun, to go back to my original notes, and see how far I’ve veered from that original path. Maybe some day I’ll start a section of posts called Manu-scraps, to include deleted scenes from drafts of young adult books and ideas of where I thought I was going, and why it didn’t work. It’s also strange to think how much the manuscript will continue to change once agents and or editors begin to get involved. But this story–this draft–is mine for the moment. It’s the story I want to celebrate having finished! So, you’ll pardon me while I walk around looking befuddled and in love for a few days, right?

Published by jody sparks

Jody Sparks Mugele spent her first career in marketing writing and leading teams of writers and editors. After her son came out as transgender in 2015, she dedicated herself to advocating for the rights of the LGBTQ+ community. For two years, she led the Indianapolis regional chapter of PFLAG, a nationally renowned LGBTQ+ advocacy group. She has given many conference talks about parenting trans kids, healthcare in the trans community, and suicidality among LGBTQ+ youth. And with GenderNexus, an Indianapolis-based advocacy organization, she created programming and led support groups to work with parents to help their children through all aspects of gender transition. She recently moved to Northeast Georgia where she is excited to develop opportunities to continue to strongly and proudly advocate for LGBTQ+ members of our society. She also LOVES kitschy Christmas crafting!

6 thoughts on “My Life As a Book Cover (4)

  1. Thanks for sharing this, Jody. It made me feel better since I’ve had several false starts on my next manuscript too. And now I’m stuck at 150 pages! Congrats on finishing your draft!

  2. Thanks for visiting, Kristin! 150 is right where I get stuck! In some ways this one was so much harder than the first where I just wrote and wrote and hoped it was good. This time I could see when it wasn’t, which was nice, but also stressful!

  3. Surfing the waves of the web I am pleasantly stranded in this beautiful blog.

    I write under the pseudonym of Josè Pascal (a descendant of the great Colonel Aureliano Buendía).

    I invite you to visit my italian writing blog I define this blog “In parole Semplici” as a “virtuacultural tin” box where they are guarded thoughts, memories, images, sounds, and simple stories. ”

    If you want to participate and to have more informations send me a letter to

    Good life and I hope to soon

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