2:22 PM

Action Cures Fear, Part 3

I spent a day earlier in the week feeling a bit depressed. See, I asked a friend of ours that had never read my story if he would be willing to read over what I was doing and give me his opinion, since he has fresh eyes and all and doesn't know as much about the story as all my other friends that I'd normally ask in this situation. He agreed and I sent him the first 8 chapters and prologue, then waited nervously as I edited more of the story.

The first time we talked about it, he pointed out a bunch of things he'd noticed that I knew I had to improve upon, which meant going all the way back to the beginning and doing more editing. I was down. I mean, shouldn't I be able to pick out these things? Or, at the very least, shouldn't I have these problems cleared up after ten years of work? I felt like if I wasn't good enough to at least not have issues describing things in detail then maybe I shouldn't be writing at all. Maybe I shouldn't try to publish this monster. Maybe, maybe, maybe...

And then I got over it and took a look at it with fresh eyes. I stepped back, told my inner critique to "shut the hell up and go away" and really took a look at it. And on a lot of what he said, he's right. Over the past years I've gotten so comfortable with the story, with the settings and characters, that in my mind I have a great picture of it all. I read my work and I see everything the way it's always been in my mind, but the description isn't there to help my first time readers get on board with me. And if I'm going to be a great writer and get this out to my audience so that people can really enjoy it, I need to have them right there with me! Getting over that fear of the criticism and of whether or not I *should* do this helped me see what needs to be changed, and today I've gotten the prologue and the first chapter beefed up. Didn't take so long once I got over myself and just did it!

So, now I'm going to be doing some hardcore beefing up of the story and adding more description so that when I get this released finally, you all will be right there on board with me. Because this is worth it, and I'm capable of it. And if that beta-reader is reading this, THANK YOU for telling me the truth and helping me make this story the best it can be!


Anonymous said...

I have been told this: "the only cure for fear is love".

Love yourself and you wont have to be afraid.

Melina and Denise said...

I understand what you are saying. I have also been working on a novel off and on for about 6 years but am now really pushing to finish. You have to be protective about who you show the work to. For instance, I have a friend who would have the skill to edit what I write beautifully, but I don't show her anything because she's a bit of a frustrated writer and I think she would be overly harsh, not constructive.

Mainly, I understand what you mean about the descriptions. I often forget important details too because it is so real to me, and I guess I think everyone shares my brain!