Monthly Archives: July 2013

Don’t Quit Now

Every story I write has stretches where I hate every word that has been written on the story, my mind is convinced that the whole story is garbage, and I’m ready to get rid of the whole thing. I‘m sure other writers have felt the same. I don’t have the cure for this condition yet, but I do know two things about it. The worst thing you can do now is stop writing on the story and the second worst is to trash it.

The voice in your head that is saying the whole story is trash is you inner editor. This editor doesn’t recognize the good from the bad when the story is being written. As long as you are writing it the inner editor thinks it sucks. And if you listen to that editor you will never get a story finished.

So, the story I’m writing might feel like it is garbage now, but it may not when I read over after I complete it. If it still feels like I should trash it after that, the best to do is to put it away for a long period. Sometimes pieces can be salvaged from it, or I read it later and realize it was not that bad. But the worst thing to do when that feeling shows up is to quit.

Genres

One of the many pieces of writing advice out there is to read everything you can get your hands on, especially if it is outside the genre you usually write in. I suggest writing in other genres as well. It might just be a short exercise to try it, or it could be journey into something great. Different genres use a variety of techniques and it is a good idea to learn as many of them as you can. This will benefit you greatly as a writer and help you develop your skills.

Four of my books are fantasy and one is science fiction. I have a manuscript that is police fiction, a romance novel, something I haven’t identified yet, and a western. The western is set to come out in October. I also have story starts that are lots of different genres. I may not be very good at some of them, but I’ve learned a lot from trying them. So, I encourage you to do the same. Maybe you’ll find out a talent you didn’t know you had, or you’ll have a piece that helped you grow as you slip it into a bottom drawer never to be seen again.