So in my numbing schedule of work-eat-sleep-repeat, I’ve managed to exhaust my muse for my 2011 Nano story, thus enabling me to pick back up on my fantasy project. To do so, I decided to read the 35,000+ words I have so far, starting from the beginning.
My reaction to my work was utter disappointment. I’ve stopped myself from reading it after suffering through about a quarter of it. It’s crap. I think so. I have no idea what made me think it was brilliant to begin with, other than the concept. I’ve told my friends as such–who have utterly lied to me about its supposed greatness–and they cannot seem to fathom my sudden vehemence with my own work. They still insist on this nonexistence genius. I cannot, will not believe it.
Once I consider, though, I realize, it’s not bad, not by any means. Just, when reading it, I realized how I could make it ten times better. I don’t know if that stems from my habitual habit of being vastly too critical of myself, wanting to always improve, or if it’s normal for any writer to always look at something they’ve written and just have this urge to make it better, that it could be better. Probably a mixture of both.
It is understandable, then, you see, for me to be so frustrated that once I’ve finally figured a way out of a fictional dead end with certain mechanics of fictional magic, I am now filled with this fiery, insatiable need to rewrite at least half of my 35,000+ words. Rewrite or serious editing. I keep telling myself that the latter half is written much neater and needs no such attention. But, who am I kidding? Might as well rewrite the entire thing!
This is why I never see progress. I think it’s somewhat odd though. With my 2011 Nano entry, I never/have not felt as though it needed to be rewritten. If anything, I feel as though I should retain that style and continuously express it with other things. My problem was and is, however, the actual art of retaining it. I am stuck, stuck I say. And this perpetual state of exhaustion and grumpiness from being partially employed does not aid in this conundrum either.
I end with this article I chanced upon to help your writing not become as stagnant as mine. These writing tips I have seen essentially with any other tip sheet for writers. Even though I do not entirely agree with these continuously expressed guidelines for writing, I do like how the author explained each point. So here’s, the 10 Mistakes’ List. Also, the image above does not belong to me, neither does the quote expressed inside of it. Both are from A Knight’s Tale, and I took the liberty of editing it into one convenient photo for gawking.
“The first draft of anything is shit.” — Ernest Hemingway