Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Stop! Step away from the keyboard

I have finished the final draft of the novel. Or have I?

Every time I read it I find something I want to change – usually a turn of phrase that makes me cringe or an sneaky, useless adverb. I blame the pixies that sneak into my laptop overnight, turning my perfect text into something… not even close to perfect.

Will it ever be just right? So that I can read it all the way through, nodding and smiling, and reach the end feeling proud and satisfied that this is the best I can do? Doubtful. The way I write today is subtly different from the way I wrote yesterday, which in turn is different from the way I wrote the day before. And the day before that. And so on. Maybe that’s just evolution.

But today I’m saying ‘ENOUGH! Move on to something else. This story has been told… and yes, you might look at it in a few days/weeks/months and wish you’d told it differently. But this will do. For now.’

I don’t want my story to turn into a child’s painting that starts off all bold, bright colours and ends up a muddy brown mess because I just didn’t know when to stop.

I’m going to press ‘Print’. Yes, I’m going to do it right this second. Right now. Hmm. But maybe that dialogue on page 57 could work a bit harder… and maybe I haven’t developed that character as well as I could have… and maybe…

Oh dear.

Awesome YA book you really should read: Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

Song of the day: Thnks Fr Th Mmrs by Fall Out Boy

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