So, I wrote a novel a few years ago. I was super excited about it and worked on it obsessively for several months. I was so motivated and then… I got it to the point where it needed re-writing and I got stuck. I went to a writing conference that, while wonderful, left me scared of publishing and the amount of work that went into getting anyone interested in the book. Apparently, writing is the easy part! And the truth is, the things you have to do to get published are the worst sort of work for me. Repetition, rejection, disappointment… and trying to sell myself. I hate self promotion.
So, while I came back from the conference excited, my motivation took a big hit. And then I had a miscarriage. And then my husband lost his job. And my desire to do anything difficult just drained away.
I haven’t even looked at the manuscript for a year and a half or so, and my New Year’s resolution was to get started again in April. Now, I know I need to do a science re-write on the novel but more than anything, I need to do a content re-write. And that is scary because I don’t know how. So I decided to approach it the way I would approach any new skill – by researching. I got some books on writing at the Border’s Going-Out-Of-Business sale and I’ve decided to dedicate (at least) one night a week to working on writing as a skill.
The books have exercises in them and I also have some “homework” plans of my own. And I figure, if I post stuff here, then I’m more likely to actually DO the work instead of putting it off and then never actually following through. I’m prone to having good intentions and then getting side-tracked. So I decided that posting updates here would give me some accountability. And if only a handful of people actually read these notes, well that’s plenty to keep me motivated!
Note: I wrote this, like, a week ago and have been too much of a wimp to post it. It’s partly that I almost don’t want the accountability. I don’t want to have to do it. But more than anything, it’s my perpetual hang-up over whether anyone actually gives a crap about my work. It’s like singing – I know I’m good and I love to sing, but I seldom do it without an ensemble. And it’s certainly not from any insecurity about my level of talent. It’s insecurity about the interest people do or don’t have in that talent. Just because I’m good doesn’t mean that an audience wants what I have to give. I guess this is the same. And the trouble is, to get published I have to convince some publisher that people will want to buy my novel. Ack!