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June 06, 2011


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I don't think anything is every perfect. I know I find myself understanding actors who refuse to watch the movies once they're finished now. They are going to focus on what they didn't get to do and not what went right.

I didn't understand this until my first book came out. Oh, the things I might change!

But, not going to happen. And the thing to remember about throwing the art of perfection overboard? If you don't, you'll never get the sails up to get anywhere. Sometimes you have to let it go, period.

You want a body of work, you got to get the sails up and outta the harbor!

Kari Marie

Holly Lisle, an author and writing teacher says, "Perfect never finishes." That phrase summed up so many things in my life including writing. Like you, I want more than one perfect thing, so I'm learning to let it go.

Donna Cummings

Maureen, you're right -- nothing ever is perfect, but I do think we can get seduced by the THOUGHT of perfection. LOL And it ends up being an anchor, keeping us from moving forward. (I love your sailing metaphor and had to add to it!)

I wanted to read one of my old manuscripts the other day, because I missed the characters, but I decided not to, in case I saw some mistakes that I hadn't noticed the first time. LOL I'll have to go see what they're up to now. :)

Donna Cummings

Kari Marie, that's a great quote! I'm adding it to my collection. :) It reminds me of one I've heard before from an interview with a movie director, something along the lines of, "You never get it perfect--you run out of time". So we have to set a deadline or we never will finish.

Terri Osburn

The first time I tried to revise something, I made it unrecognizable. Big lesson learned there. *sigh*

I don't know how anyone works on this many projects at the same time. Kudos to all who do it. My brain can work on one WIP at a time. I can do blogs and (very) short stories, but one WIP. At least one first draft at a time.

But I too have the words playing musical sentences thing. Thankfully, there are enough times when I read something back and think, "Wow, that's better than I thought" to keep me moving forward with some kind of confidence.

Donna Cummings

Terri, I think I must have had a similar experience as you when I first started revising, because I used to hate it. HATE it. LOL But now that hard drives keep getting bigger, I can just keep saving and saving and saving. The tricky part is keeping track of which is the latest revision!

I don't have a hard time keeping track of the various WIPs. The characters and stories are all so different -- kinda like watching more than one TV series -- it's easy to know what everyone will do, based on their personalities, etc.

And thank goodness for the "this is better than I thought" thing. It definitely keeps us moving forward. :)


Wow - this post didn't like me at all until I logged in through twitter.

This post is timely for me. I printed my WIP yesterday becuase I've fast-drafted to this point and have discovered I need to change some plot elements I've had in since the very beginning.

So, I think at this point it's better for me to go back and start rewriting and revising so then I can move forward with the right story in mind.

I'll be thinking of this post so I remember not to pick my story to death!

Donna Cummings

Sabrina, I'm not sure why it's acting up like that! Maybe it just wanted to see your beautiful picture twice. :)

I think that's a great plan you've got there. The reason I like fast drafting is because I learn about the characters and the story. So it makes perfect sense that you'd go back at this point to rewrite and revise, now that you've learned what the story is. :)

And the picking the story to death comes after many revisions, when we can't seem to let it go to work on anything else. I don't think you'll have that problem at all. :)

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