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Years ago on a cold, rainy day, when I was in my college library, I stumbled across a copy of Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. Having read his Martian Chronicles and Illustrated Man and liked them somewhat, I thought I ought to give it a try. It was a short book and I figured it would be a way to while away the doldrums of a boring day.
Needless to say, Fahrenheit 451 did more than just chase away boredom. I was sucked in and didn't move from my spot until I finished the whole thing. It's a powerful book that to me is by far Bradbury's best work. When I was done reading the story, I consumed the afterward and learned something that stuck with me until today.
Bradbury explained that he sat in the basement of the UCLA library and finished the first draft in nine days. His publisher, upon reading it, told him to double the size of the draft so they could publish it. So Bradbury spent another nine days in the UCLA library and punched out a literary masterpiece. While editing process took weeks, it nevertheless amazes me that he got it done so quickly. I always thought if I could write so well and so fast, then maybe being an author was in the cards for me.
As of today, seventeen days after I started the sequel to The Darkest Autumn, the first draft is done. Certainly, the book needs to be edited and cleaned up, but what's amazing is that I did over 55,066 words in 17 days or about 3,239 words per day. I can claim I wrote faster than Bradbury! While I did have the advantage of a computer over a typewriter, and it's doubtful my work is anywhere as good as Fahrenheit 451, it's nevertheless reassuring to know that I can at least write faster than him.
It was a rush to finish another book this year. Tomorrow the editing process begins. As for the third book in the series, I'm going to take a break for a few days and let my hands rest up.