Old and New: Edits and Progress

Now comes the real balancing act. I should at some point today get the edits on the short story I have coming out in August. I am slowly working on the new stuff as well. Since the edits are probably going to be minor (my story isn’t even 16,000 words), and I’m pretty determined to get them done within a week or so. The editor is very sweet, though she has said some things that made me a little nervous, but the power is in my hands. I can argue them down and, in this rare case, I have permission from the owner of the publishing house to go over the allotted word count. So, I don’t have to get it back in line. I like that. The owner is very open to her writers and very available and, though it’s obviously a smaller publisher, I like that personal touch.

Still, I take it seriously, so I will be doing that as a top priority.

I don’t want the current stuff to suffer any more than it already has. It’s slow, slower than I would like. My heart wasn’t in it. I have had a lot going on, and my mind has been on all that and not on the writing. Not even as an escape from what’s bothering me. However, in the past week I have been building momentum and, with a few words of encouragement from people I admire and trust, I have been spurred onward a little.

Sometimes I think I act like a pompous pro. I’m not. I don’t have a schedule, I don’t have a program of output, I don’t have discipline, I only have one novel out and one short story. I do acclimate rather quickly, though. I get flustered my first time and then it’s all in my brain. I tell myself, “You’ve been through this before. You survived. You learned a lot. You will be fine. You will get through it.” And it’s true. The editing phase for my novel was difficult. Very difficult. I learned SO much, and I read all the really bad reviews (all two of them, though it seemed like seventy-five THOUSAND) and saw all the negative star ratings on Goodreads and felt stabbed in the heart with each evil sentence and each star rating under 3…or 4, if I’m to be honest. Yet, every good review, every word of kindness or appreciation (one of which I recently received on my barren Twitter account), every expression of love for my characters, every good thing makes me feel better and makes me want to continue.

I’ve got all that. What I need to work on is getting a schedule, plowing forward, not letting my fears stop me. I say that so often. It’s like a song you never liked but hear on the radio so much that you hate it with the burning passion of 1,000 suns.

So, I have the momentum now — slow, creeping, and weak though it may be. My new procrastination aversion techniques are actually working. Editing won’t stop me because I won’t let it. I won’t let myself stop this time or I will never grow. Creation is like that. Sometimes it’s scary and it hurts and you want to run away and hide in something that’s comfortable. But you don’t grow then. If I hadn’t suffered through the first novel process, then I would be totally unprepared, frightened, lost, and easily wounded. I got tougher. I have plenty of room to grow, and I hope to do it and do it to a point where plowing forward, juggling two or more projects, and always having fun are all common and comfortable. Of course, at that time, it will be time to push forward even more, I suppose.

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~ by Darren Endymion on June 15, 2015.

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