You’ve been very patient with me, loyal readers. First, I abandon you to the cyberwolves for weeks, then I make my triumphant return, only to whine about work. I was all set to drop another corporate dirty bomb on you tonight, too – and ooooh, kids, this one practically wrote itself. But I’m going to do you a favor (you’re welcome – remember, nothing says thank you like cash donations payable to me) and give the gloomy cloud of cubicle comedy a rest.
Instead… an overdue update on the novel. Okay, maybe you’re not that excited about that, either, but it’s better than another rant about senior management, right? Right. Moving on.
The editor-slash-mentor-slash-instructor I’ve been working with has finished her review. Man, I can’t say enough about Jenny. Her feedback is so targeted and on point that just one sentence is worth the whole fee. In the weeks since I sent her my manuscript, I fretted about her reaction. What if she hated it? Then she wrote to say she was halfway through, and was really enjoying it. At that point I did what any writer does when she receives compliments – I convinced myself she was just being nice and I kicked the fretting into high gear. What if she liked the beginning, but decided the plot fell apart after chapter 15? What if she told me not to quit my day job?
My nerves kept me relatively quiet on the book front, which is why I haven’t posted an update. But then last weekend, the light at the end of the literary tunnel appeared, bright and cheerful. She sent me a few line edits, a few structural suggestions, a few unanswered questions – all of which I’m working on this weekend.
But in case you were wondering what else she said…
“What is Sarah’s novel according to her editor-slash-mentor-slash-instructor?”
(Hint: see today’s title).
Yes, she really did say that. Only not in the lame Jeopardy reference. That part was all mine.
All writers go through self-doubt, self-loathing, insecurity, fear (sounds fun, right?). But most of us can’t imagine doing anything else, even if we never sold a single page. Sometimes, we read some of our work and think okay, maybe I don’t suck that bad. Maybe I’m even decent. But there’s a huge difference between being a good stylistic presenter of sentences and someone who can sustain a story from page 1 to the end. That was more my fear. I know I can follow grammar rules and occasionally make people smile, but I wasn’t so confident about the storytelling piece. The authenticity. So hearing positive feedback from another writer whom I admire (and whom I pay to punch holes in my plot and slash-n-burn my pages with a red pen) was great validation.
I’m on the right path. Now let the torture and self-loathing begin!
Thanks everyone for your support and encouragement. I will keep you posted, I promise!