Author Accelerator Member Spotlight: Chris Wenzel
Celebrating a writer’s success
We’d like to introduce Chris Wenzel, one of our Author Acceleratormembers. Chris recently finished the first draft of her novel and we invited her to sit down for a little interview to talk about her experience. So without further ado, here is Chris!
Q: Okay, Chris, can we have the basics about your project and your book coach?
Chris: I’ve been working on my novel, Tethered Braids(a cultural fiction novel) for three years and my book coach is Kemlo Aki.
Q: How does it feel to have finished?
Chris:Fantastic! If I were only able to pick one word to describe the feeling it would be elation! I did it!
Q: What did you do to celebrate?
Chris: I wrote The End on the manuscript the day of my birthday and two days before the Revision Sprint. The best present I could have given myself. At my celebratory dinner when I blew out my birthday candle, I first said “thank you for a wish come true,” and then I made my wish for the next year to complete a polished manuscript and find an agent. Then just in case the myth that your wish will not come true if you say it out loud, I added a secret silent one :)
Q: What are your next steps?
Chris: Even though the story line is finished I am not delusional about how much work is still left. Taking the Revision Sprint was the next best birthday present to myself. The concrete skills I learned for revising a full and daunting manuscript during the workshop has given me confidence and definitely motivated me to dig in and get it done. My plan is to have, as Jennie calls it, “the wet clay” revisions, done by early March and then contact Author Accelerator to go to the next phase, Manuscript Review. With that. get the wet clay fully set and hardened into a polished form and start pitching.
Q: Why would you recommend coaching to get to a finished draft?
Chris: Prior to working with a book coach, I made many attempts and tried various approaches to write a story that I couldn’t let go of. I buried myself in writing classes, thinking if I kept working on honing the craft I would be able to write the full novel. When I would get stuck in the writing, I would take another class. But still could not figure out why I was getting stuck. The classes were all useful but they weren’t helping me finish the story. The Author Accelerator method for drilling into what the story is about and the spot-on pairing with a compatible book coach, and a weekly page count accountability, was what finally got me to the exhilarating moment of typing The End on the manuscript. I am forever grateful to my coach Kemlo who more than once talked me off the precipice of quitting because of her belief in the story and my writing. She gave me some much needed tough love edits and comments and never failed to encourage me. I would recommend any writer who has a story they can’t let go of and is serious about writing to the end, to sign up with Author Accelerator. You won’t be sorry you made that investment in yourself. I’m not.
Thanks so much for taking the time to talk with us, Chris. And again, congrats on your huge accomplishment!
Originally published at medium.com on January 12, 2018.