Wednesday, September 5, 2012

IWSG: Editing Got You Down?

The first Monday of every month some of us like to get together for the Insecure Writer's Support Group. It's a wonderful supportive group started by Alex J. Cavanaugh, where writers can talk about all the things that make us insecure. If you'd like to find out more about it or see who else is participating please go HERE. If you are visiting my blog for the GUTGAA, it's the next post down.

This past week has been especially hard for me in terms of insecurities. For two reasons, I think.

One, I'm neck deep in edits and well, when all I'm looking at day after day are all the things that are wrong with my MS, it gets a little disheartening. I try to remind myself that I want these comments. I want to make it the best I possibly can and if no one told me the things that were wrong with it, I couldn't fix them. But, It's still discouraging to stare at all the things that I've done wrong.

Two, Thursday, Matthew over at QQQE featured my query letter. (Thank you so much Matthew!) I got some wonderful feedback and some great suggestions on how to make it better. It was however, the first time I've really put anything regarding AWAKENED out there. I got a few comments that were a little disheartening and made me question myself and my story, for about a day.

Then, I talked to some great friends, thank you, and they helped me realize it doesn't matter. I didn't make up the story. The story chose me to tell it. I know that there will be haters out there no matter what and I just have to grow my skin a little thicker. I love my story. I love my characters. And in the end... THAT is what really matters.

So, I'm buckling down, getting my edits done and redoing my query letter. Making them both the best I possibly can. And reminding myself that I'm doing this because I have to and I love it.

And if you believe in fate... then maybe you think it was looking out for me, 'cause tonight at dinner... here was my fortune cookie.

What do you think? Was it fate? Does editing get you down? Have these same issues? Any advice?


Elise Fallson said...

That is perfect fortune cookie advice. Maybe someone is looking after you... (:

You've got a great story to tell. Try not to let the edits or harsh critics get you down. The best of the best have to go through this process. You should have seen all the comments I got on my first draft. At first all I could see were the comments, but little by little I made changes, knocked down the problems areas and it's starting to look like a real book. And remember, you don't have to agree with all the comments/suggestions people have made for you. It's your story and you know it better than anyone. Editing just takes time. e-mail me if you have any questions or just want to bitch about editing. I'm here for ya! (:

Cynthia said...

If you have a story you want to tell, don't let a critical comment hold you back....Yeah, editing can be a chore, but I often tell myself that it's what I need to do get to the next level. good luck with everything!

Natalie Aguirre said...

What an awesome fortune. And so true.

I know what you mean about the critiques being helpful but discouraging. I got a discouraging beta read this year and realized I had to change my plot. Discouraging because I want someone to say my manuscript is done. But my story will be stronger for the changes.

And I liked your story from your query on Matt's blog. I know you can fix the query. Don't worry about the discouraging remarks.

Yolanda Renee said...

Editing is hard, putting it out there the most difficult part, but eventually you'll get it to where you can't be dissuaded because it's all you want it to be. You'll get there.
Fortune cookie is right!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That fortune says it all!
Just keep at it. Take the constructive criticism and ignore the rest.

M.J. Fifield said...

Editing totally gets me down. I end up feeling like I'm crawling across this seemingly never ending wasteland. I have a great friend who really helped me find my way out. Not everyone is going to love my book so it has to be something I love. So I'd say you're on the right track.

That is the best fortune cookie ever.

Barbara Watson said...

Yes, I have these same issues. Receiving three CPs notes on an entire MS all at once and I was slammed into the same place as you. But then I get to work. Evaluate their comments, what I know about my story and its intentions and wade through the changes I need to make.

Allison said...

I often have to remind myself that I'm writing because I love it, and that helps me write more freely and takes the pressure off :)

Allison (Geek Banter)

Patsy said...

I'm not sure about fate, but I am sure that if you keep going you'll get through the editing.

Wendy Paine Miller said...

I love when fortune cookies put it straight like that.

Best of luck on your edits! You can do it!
~ Wendy

Stephsco said...

I really relate to feeling disheartened by comments. It's necessary to put your work out there and listen to the feedback, but at the same time you need to consider who the feedback is coming from and determine what is necessary to change and what is just subjective chatter.

It's TOUGH. I'm struggling with the same thing. I reworked my first 250 words based on lots of feedback from the WriteonCon forum. In the end, I don't like the changes -- it's just not quite there yet. My entry for another forum pitch/first words event confirmed it's not there. I know this, so at least it's confirmed, but I'm so frustrated with how to make it work!

Good luck again with GUTGAA. I plan to follow your blog too.

Jessica Salyer said...

Cynthia- Very true! Thanks.

Patsy- if you keep going, it is a sure fire way to get to the end. :)