I am at that horrible, seemingly inevitable stage of writing my novel when I become convinced that my plot doesn’t work, my characters are lost, and that I am a talentless fraud and that this will be the book that outs me (I know there are many of you reading this blog who believe that already happened long ago). Coincidentally, today the royalty statements for my first three MONK novels arrived along with the contracts for my next two. It didn’t help. It only added to my anxiety.
My brother called me tonight just to say hello… and I unloaded on him.
He just sighed and said "You say this shit every two months. You said it when you were at this same point in your last book and the one before that and the one before that and the one before that. And they all turned out fine."
I know that he’s right, but it doesn’t help or make the writing any easier. Tonight, I suck. But I will keep writing and rewriting and agonizing and procrastinating (by posting on my blog) until it becomes fun again.
I guess that’s what makes me a professional. Or a fool who is deluding himself.
5 thoughts on “I Suck”
Lee, I remember you from our days at MWA SoCal and your writing is not only humorous, but well done. If I could put half the humor you get into your novels, into mine, I’d be a happy camper. But you kow what? A little self doubt keeps us honest. Find a writer that doesn’t have and it and I’ll show you someone really in need of help! Take a break, smoke a good Cuban cigar, sip a little wine and then when you are missing what you do best, get back to it! Deadline, you say? We don’t need no stinkin’ deadlines!
Are we working on the same book? 🙂
I think we’re writing the same book, Lee. And we have the same brother. Mine responds with, “Yes, yes, I know, you’re writing crap. Again.”
What makes you a professional is not that you keep on doing the same thing over again, but that you’re paid to do it over and over. Any writer can keep on doing it, not all of us actually get paid. Hell, we don’t even get dinner before the inevitable roll in the hay most of the time. I keep expecting different results but that’s the very definition of insanity, isn’t it?
I don’t thing that an author really has a total grasp on whether the WIP is going to be good or not until the ending is actually written, because it is so important. So, until that’s done, the anxiety will be there. Until then, about the best you can hope for is to know that you have a pretty good WIP provided that you can deliver the all important wham-bam ending. Once you do that, though, you can sit back and grin and say, “Oh, yeah, baby. That’s what I’m talking about.”