So earlier in the week (or was it last week?), I sent out two stories to two different sources for friendly editing, finger-pointing, and general ragging. I got one story back from each source today. And both stories are covered, and this Siobhan is a happy Siobhan.
One critique wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought. It gave me some good insight into my own shortcomings as a storyteller – blast those little details! – and showed me a few places where I could take a good story and make it great. Granted, it’ll blow the word-count cap completely out of the water, but I’m okay with that. I’ll just write it ’til its done and then figure out what to do with it.
The other one?
See the title of this post? Yeah. It got hacked absolutely to bits. I mean flayed open, gutted, sauteed in its own fat, and slopped back on my plate with a heaping helping of WTF.
I asked for it. I mean literally… I handed the story over and said “here…mutilate at will.” And she did. Oh, boy…she did. But I’m okay with it. I’m not angry at all – thick skin is useful at times like these – and I’m actually sort of relieved that someone else could look at my work and say, “okay, this is wrong. That sucks. Kill this. But do more of this.” In the end, those suggestions will make me a better writer.
Yeah, I sent her a long email in which I listed all the reasons why it sucked. I made some stupid excuses – which really weren’t excuses at all… they were valid reasons for things being done the way they were. But that goes back to a previous post that we won’t cover again.
Like I said, I’m not angry at all. I know now I have the bare bones of a scary as all get-out story sitting on my computer. I know that the fear I felt while writing it is translating well to the page – in some parts, that is – and that if I can suck it up and finish it, I have something that could potentially give people nightmares for days. I’m excited by that prospect.
So in addition to the novel that needs reworking, I have two stories on my plate that need some TLC. I’m not in any big hurry on any of the three because revisions and rewrites scare me more than clowns, spiders, and tornadoes put together, but I’m going to finish them. In fact, I’ve made a promise to myself that I’m not going to work on any of the unfinished things until those three are cleared up and ready for another bashing. Hopefully they’ll stand up to it a little better next time around.
4 thoughts on “HACKED TO BITS!!!”
What about the one I gutted a while back?
It’s the same story… I have what you gave me and what I got from other people… and believe me, I still have a long way to go on it. Like I said… I scared the absolute shit out of myself writing it… after all, possession is one of my biggest fears.
I hadn’t said anything about what you sent me because I haven’t done much to it since then. You’ll be getting a new draft when its done… just sayin’.
Revisions are the best things ever. Yes, I know they’re a time-consuming pain in the butt, but in the end, you have a story that’s ten times better than when you started. Just go into it telling yourself that nothing is written in stone. You can keep changing up until you’re ready to send it off.:)
Oh, I know. I just… I don’t know. I get frustrated looking back at what I’ve written and knowing that I could have done better. It isn’t that I’m angry at my editors or that I don’t like the story anymore. I just get mad at myself for not doing it right the first time.