The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug. **Mark Twain

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Just let it go!

I was talking to a writer friend last night. She's been working on a novel for 10 years. It's completed and she even has an idea for the cover. It's been completed for about two years. I've read parts of it and it's pretty good.

But....she keeps saying, "I think it needs a little more tweaking."

I think all writers suffer with that type of fear. We want the world to like what we write so we are continually trying to write something of "worth". That's a great philosophy - until - it robs us of a career. There's a lot of things wrong with that type of thinking.

1. When you do finally believe it's perfect and you present it to an editor, they will probably want to know how long you've been working on it. If you say ten years, they will gulp wondering if they will be able to get another book out of you. If the first one is successful, they will want a follow-up book. And they will want you to write it in less time.

2. Think of all the information and stories you could have written in the time you spent re-writing the first one. The world has missed at least 9 books while you were fussing with one.

3. Authors should be willing to speak and get out and meet people. If your book is published, your life will be filled with speaking engagements and book signings. You are going to have to produce other books while all that is going on.

4. After a few re-writes, your writing will suffer. If we used a line graph to represent the first few re-writes of your book, the line would soar to the top. Every writer must do some re-writing. But as you begin to challenge every word, the line will curve and finally drop off the bottom.

So...if you are getting ready for a writer's conference like I am - or if you are sitting at home playing with your book or article - it's time......Just let it go!

I have a huge project that I will present at this conference. I hope it's liked and received with a big - "yes, let's publish!" But even if it isn't, I'll take the criticism and rework it and present it again. For now...I'm just going to Let it GO!

God loves you and has called you to write,


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