Some self-shaming

I have a novel to edit. But I haven’t been. It’s been the holidays– that’s an excuse! But the truth is, I’m afraid.

It’s not that I hate editing. I love making a book better! I like to add new scenes and I like to tweak dialog. I don’t like to remove characters although I don’t mind cutting scenes. But my stories are so sparse that usually I don’t need to cut much. At least according to my own judgement…

I think I’m afraid of this story though. I don’t generally think it’s a good idea to talk about problems with a specific story but as long as I’m editing this one I’m probably going to do so as penance.

I’m afraid of this story because I’ve spent so long on it– far longer than I wanted. It’s had two major drafts and I just want it to be done. And I wish I had an editor or agent so I could just focus on writing instead of trying to figure out how to make it publishable. I hate striving for publishabity or even agent-attraction instead of striving for what I consider a good story. I suspect this is why I should avoid critique groups– because I end up spending too long worrying about how to appeal to specific people instead if myself.

But that’s whining, isn’t it?

I really need to focus on making it good according to my own standards. And I need to get over my desire to Just Be Done. One thing I’ve finally Partially internalized this year is the journey Of a thousand miles starts with a single step. I might get over my indecision on how to edit this novel if I would just accept that there may be a lot of work left.

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