Here is what I’m finding… I’m becoming “content obsessive”…I unearth myself worrying about if she shrugged or maybe she looked up at the ceiling, did she say that or just think it…should I spell it out in detail or let the conversation speak for itself (no pun intended).
Basically, the longer the story stays in my hands, the more editing I find myself doing.
Great! You say to yourself, she’s taking this seriously.
And yes, I am.
But, here’s the problem…I’m approaching the red zone…the place where I’m cresting dangerously close to 100,000 words, and as anyone knows–that’s the limit. Unless, of course, you’re writing an epic, historical novel, spanning the length of time…which, by the way, I’m not…my feet are firmly planted in the light, breezy world of Chick Lit.
Stephiene Meyer once said, that even with the extravagant success of Twilight, she still looks at her book and would change things. As a fan of the series (Edward is my hunk of sparkly stone ::swoon::) I can’t imagine how it could be better. I know she’s caught a lot of flack for her writing style and the prose of it–but as a reader, I don’t worry those things, I am way too caught up in the world she created and the beauty of it. Whatever her flaws may be (imagined or otherwise) she did something really, really right. How could she possibly change a thing and make it better? It’s amazing, as is.
Maybe that’s the hex of the writer. The responsibility of the author. The nagging feeling that it could always be just a little bit better. I feel accountable for my characters. I want them to resonate with a reader, and give them a chance to really make an impact with their own gravitational pull.
We’ve all read the “sizzle-less steak” novel. The book that almost goes there, but not quite. I don’t want to be that author who could have gone there, wanted to go there, and failed. It’s an abject fear of mine.
I guess the thing is this…I’m a writer, or trying to be a writer, not an editor. I’m a reader, not someone who can critique a book with the facts to back it up, I can only go forward with gut reaction and feeling. I write like I speak, I didn’t go to college (well, I did…but dropped out because math is H.A.R.D hard) so I don’t know where the exact placement of a is coma all the time. And I over think it. But what I give away when I send this book out into the world–that’s me. Those are my thoughts, my words, my story. And I want it to be fantastic, edge of your seat, blow your mind, make you think, inspire you to feel, good. I want to write a good book.
So…in closing…every time I think it’s time to put down the pen, I don’t…I pick it up and make one or two or ten more tweaks, because that’s me…I’m a tweaker.
But, just incase I ever go overboard…I read this article…