Maybe people don’t feel like there’s a lot to say? Come edit time, gone is the thrill of the new idea. The spectacles, and scalpels come out, along with a healthy dosage of humility. It’s time to suffer the craptitude of what you’ve written. If you’re lucky, some of it will be better than you expected, but there’s always the suck – that crazy-making, soul crushing, suck. No book that was ever written was free of suck, at least not the first time around, nor the second, nor the seventh…
There are moments that I’ve thought I’d had enough, that I’ve been tempted to to trunk the novel, and let it never see daylight ever again. I’m not sure if these moments of despair are due to objective quality, or my current head space. I doubt I’ll ever know the difference. All I know is that those moments happen, and still happen. Just this past weekend, I was sorely tempted, yet again, to give up on this novel, but I persisted, and the next two chapters were a beautiful surprise. Maybe they’re not beautiful to anyone but me, but they did not feel nearly as terrible as I was bracing for. And, I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. Doubt’s the worst enemy you’ll face as a writer.
I don’t know if my book will ever been ‘great’, but all I can do is my best, and really, what else can we writers do?
A few more weeks to go until this draft is done, and it’ll feel so good to let it go. So so good.
I know a few of you are in the thick of edits right now. How do you get through it?