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How I Drafted And Self-Edited My Third Contemporary Christian Romance Novel

Updated: Jun 24

Hello everyone,


I hope you are all doing well by God's grace.

In today's blog post I'll be sharing with you my journey to drafting and self-editing the third novel in my contemporary Christian romance series called The One Who Sees Me.

I first got the idea for this story in November 2020 when I was drafting book 2 in the series but I didn't get the chance to start drafting it until November 2021. This is because I spent the majority of 2021 prepping for the release of book 1 and also editing book 2 in the series. For NaNoWrimo 2021, I wrote 10,000 words of the first draft of book 3 but then I had to take a long break to prepare for the release of book 2 in the series. After the release of book 2 in May 2022, I was a bit burnt out, so it took me a while to get back into drafting mode. I was finally able to finish the first draft of book 3 in July 2022 by God's grace and you can watch the video of my full drafting journey above.


After leaving the manuscript alone for 2 weeks, I finally picked it up again in August 2022 and read through it. I made lots of notes as I went along and I focused on the big picture edits of the draft. It wasn't easy but I tried my best to forget about the fact that it was a first draft, so I tried hard not to look at it as perfect it.

In September 2022, I started working on the second draft of the story while on a trip to Ghana. This trip was very inspiring for me and the change in environment definitely gave me a burst of inspiration. Although I wanted to finish draft 2 at the end of September, I was only able to get a 1/3 of the way into it so I had to extend my deadline.


By the time October hit, I found that I couldn't stop myself from doing line edits as well, so I decided to combine the two and gave myself a new deadline for the end of October. Unfortunately there were a few personal challenges I faced in October so I wasn't able to meet this deadline in the end. It was very discouraging but I pressed on by God's grace and pushed myself to finish the edits by the second week of November. By this point, I had already contacted my beta readers and asked them if they were available to read the manuscript in November so this gave me an extra push because I knew there were people waiting to read the book.


Finally, by God's special grace, I was able to finish draft 2 before my deadline and I sent the manuscript to my 3 beta readers. Although I gave them a month to read the manuscript, one of them finished reading the book in 3 days, the other in 5 days. My third beta reader also finished reading the manuscript before the December 11th deadline.


I was very nervous to send this manuscript out to beta readers but the process was very encouraging for me because I got lots of useful feedback and criticism to make the story better. I took three weeks off from writing in November and when December came, I started working on draft 3 of the novel with the goal to get it to my editor by the first week of January.


By God's grace I was able to finish incorporating all the beta edits including writing two new chapters and I finally sent it over to my editor. I am so happy I was able to meet this deadline because it gave me time to take some time off from writing, relax, read more and just mentally prepare myself to tackle my next set of goals for my author business.


So that's my journey to writing and self-editing my third novel. I'm excited to get edits back from my editor and to start polishing the manuscript. This third novel is called The One Who Sees Me and the ebook is currently available for preorder on Amazon only for now. If you prefer getting your ebooks from other platforms or if you read paperbacks then wide preorders will be available after the official cover reveal in May.


Thank you all so much for reading.

I hope you have a wonderful day.

God bless you

Joanny 💕

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