"There are days when the result is so bad that no fewer than five revisions are required. In contrast, when I'm greatly inspired, only four revisions are needed." - John Kenneth Galbraith
Yesterday was a discouraging day for me. Still working through the Maass workbook, I realized that, according to his requirements for a "breakout novel", I was sorely lacking.
It was "craft day" at Grandma's for my DD, so I had several hours in which to work. I started on exercise fourteen... got frustrated. Moved to fifteen... got more frustrated. Tossed the workbook on the floor and jumped up and down on it. Decided I should just thrown my entire novel out the window since it would never meet The Donald's requirements. Stared at the computer for about an hour without writing a word. Made coffee. Came back and decided that my "career" as a writer was over.
My husband says I have mood swings. I suppose he's right.
The conclusion I came to (the conclusion to which I came) was this: I'm done. My fellow Maass workers will most likely be frustrated because I swore I would make it through all the exercises this time. To be honest, I read through them all and made notes of things I want to look for and correct. I got some good ideas on plot changes from the first thirteen exercises that I think will make the story stronger. I'm hoping that the information from exercises twenty-two and twenty-three (Low Tension and Backstory) have permeated my very cellular structure. By far my favorite exercise was the fifth (Adjusting the Volume) followed closely by the sixth (reversing motives).
I printed off the first third of the story and began to tear it apart in order to put it back together again. There is a contest with a deadline in a couple of weeks that I may enter this in, just to test the waters a bit.
This process has made me think about when a project is done. I wonder, much of the time, when does an author know it's the "final" revision? Especially, when does an unpublished author know this? I believe that something can always be improved. I wonder if published author's look at their bestseller and think, "Shoot, that third line in chapter eighteen is weak."
Completely off topic -- WOO HOO -- Charity finaled in the Golden Rose Contest in the YA category. Yay, C!!
How long before I hear about my query?
7 hours ago