I'm not going to pretend to know everything about writing, there are hundreds of articles on the topic if you ever tumble down the pintrest rabbit hole. Some I find useful other not so useful. The writing process is deeply personal and at the end of the day you have to find what works for you. But I will post about what I find works for me and my experiences with the writing process.
The Bride of Fire is without a doubt one of the most complex stories I have attempted to craft and completed, it has taken 2 years to write and over twice the length of Mustang Wild. I could have handed it in to the publisher 4-6 weeks earlier however I have learnt a powerful lesson from my first publication, something I call the 'Magic 4 Weeks'.
When writing Mustang Wild I reviewed it again and again and AGAIN. Until I hated it, the plot line bored me and I thought I surely couldn't make any other changes. I couldn't see the wood for trees and was beginning to doubt the whole project and it was painful to review it one more time. I JUST WANTED IT TO END. I hit the submit button. Big Mistake. Huge. I shouldn't have done. A few months break and a publication later my mind got to working again and I realized there was a chapter that should have been written and it was important to character development. I wrote the chapter and loved it but it was too late to be included
I later read, as I entered head first into the world of being an author that you should leave said work for a time when you reach this point and then go over it one more time.
They were right.
The biggest thing I have learnt is after you have reviewed your book to the point you think it is perfect and that you can not possibly think of one single more thing in which to alter. This is the point in which you finish the edits, save it and shut the laptop. you do not touch it for at least 4 weeks no matter the temptation in you itching fingers. Do not touch. Step away from the keyboard right now. That 4 weeks break is crucial, it allows you to empty your mind of whirling ideas.
When you come back to it note book in hand, read it like a reader for the first time. Notice the small plot holes and character inconsistencies and start listing all the tiny things that would bug you AS A READER. I did this with The Bride of Fire but not with Mustang Wild and I can tell, boy how I can tell.
Happy writing :D