I have written a novella before, and short stories enough to fill the word count of a novel, but never, before, a novel.
And now I've written one, rough as it is, and there is a tremendous sense of. . . how can I put this, the work I have ahead of me, for I have so much work ahead of me. Though I want to emphasize, it isn't a bad feeling. Knowing that the work I have to do is there waiting for me makes me feel happy, because it is a different sort of work, and juggling the large amount of words and ideas in a novel is very different than juggling those in a shorter piece, and I'm looking forward to that new challenge.
But for now, I'm not going to edit - I'm going to put it aside till July, work on other projects (likely Dr. Mercury) and then, in July, I'm going to return to that giant collection of words and write some more, fresh headed, with new eyes.
And a new laptop, because that's how I'm going to reward myself for writing a novel.
For I destroyed a laptop, two actually, in the process of writing this novel. I wrote on one till the power cord jammed and cracked and split the insides and could not be fixed. Then I borrowed another, working on that till the screen cracked, till I could only see eight lines of text at a time, typing in a small screen as the flickering screen above ate more and more of the space. This novel broke what wasn't meant to last, but I feel very confident that the things that broke only did so to make room for bigger and better.