Go hard or go home.
Come correct or don’t come at all.
I have to admit that I haven’t fully lived by those mottos/clichés/ sayings when it comes to my writing. Basically, I have been a lazy writer. My WIP has been “completed” twice, just to return to WIP. Why? Because I got
impatient lazy. Impatience laziness caused me to rush to completion. Why? Because I felt the pressure to just be done with the darn thing already. “It’s been so long… just finish!” So I would finish, but would ultimately discover something wrong with it, and back to WIP the story would go.
The first version I finished was in 2007. I queried this version. It got rejected, which is to be expected initially. After some time, it got put on the backburner. Last year, I blew off the e-dust and decided to rework it. Decided that I would go
rogue independent with its publication. Added content and took away content until I got to a version that I was happier with. I then said, “This is the version I will publish. No more changes. This is it. I love it.” I went on to have the MS edited and had my cover done.
I threw myself into the business side of the house. While researching, print dates vs. publication dates, blog tours, book reviews, and websites, I discovered crucial information about my content. The MS was still flawed. Because it wasn’t my best effort. Yes, I had made some newbie mistakes, such as relying too heavily on that prologue to info-dump and springboard the novel into action. Or I told when I should’ve shown. Or I explained away plot holes in a few paragraphs instead of properly filling that hole with plot, action, and dialogue. But mostly, I had repeated the mistake of the first completed version:
Impatience laziness. This is unacceptable.
It’s unacceptable because at the end of the day, the work I put out will be mine. It’ll have my name on it. I cannot, knowing what I know, be hasty to publish just to get it done and say I published a book. Besides, there are way too many authors out there like that already. I love what I do too much and it would be a disservice not only to me, but to any potential reader out there. I have been in positions when I knew it wasn’t my best and it never feels good to know I didn’t do everything I absolutely could.
So, I will stop being impatient AND lazy. I understand that it will never be perfect, but it needs to be my best effort. Regardless of phenomenal success or utter failure, when I do (finally) publish, I will know that I put my best foot forward and presented no less than my best work.