Monday, February 20, 2012

Fear and Finishing

First, some general updates. Looks like I will be on chef duty at least for a bit next week. The BaldMan is having a torn meniscus in his knee fixed up on Tuesday, so he will be off his feet for a few days. I had a similar thing done a few months back, and while it did not take long for recovery, there are a few uncomfy days, and the crutches kind of get in the way. So, watch out, World! I'm in the kitchen next week!

The weather continues to be odd, at best. We may get a dusting of snow this weekend, but then it will be warming somewhat again. One nice thing is that the days are noticably longer now. It is decently light when I take the dog out after his dinner in the evening. I no longer have to grab a flashlight to see where we are going.

Yesterday was so nice, I decided to give the chicken coop a partial clean out. Just shoveled out a wheelbarrow full of winter bedding and spread clean shavings. The old stuff gets dumped at the back of the yard to compost.

So, the fear thing. It's kind of a odd occurrence. As of right now, I have one rather short story just about done, another rewrite on what will probably end up as a novella length story and, of cousre, the novel. That last one is still far enough out from what I'd call done, that it isn't falling prey to the fear problem. The other two? Not so much.

I get this close to being "done" with something, and I fall into a sort of paralysis. I can't seem to put out that final push to the end. I guess it's because then I have to think about doing something with them. The odd thing is that I do have a plan for what to do when done. I've researched markets, looked into options, and I have a reasonable idea how to proceed. It's that nasty little voice in my head that holds me back.

Another funny thing is that I can (usually) turn off the Editor-Inside while I am writing. Or at least while I am writing drafts. It's once I am facing the option of sending it out there for real, that I get the willies. I'm not really sure why it is so different. But I have guess.

I can take criticism. I don't always like hearing that there are problems with a story, but I also know full well that practically no one writes the perfect first draft that doesn't need any work. Tell what's wrong. Tell me what you don't like. Tell me what doesn't work. I can fix it. (Or not, but that's my choice.) I do value the feedback.

And I think that's the problem with having a piece on submission. When you get that rejection, there's no feedback. Just the "doesn't meet our criteria" form letter in most cases. Which kind of leaves me feeling- inadequate? Or something like that. At the very least, it fuels the voice that says "you suck." I know that's not necessarily the case, and stories get rejected for lots of reasons that have nothing to do with whether or not it's any good, but not having a reason seems to unnerve me, and I don't want to subject myself to that.

I'll get them done. I'll send them out. I'll probably get rejected. I've had it happen before. I lived. I'll survive again. And I'll send 'em somewhere else. But this finishing up part of the process continues to be one of the worst parts of the whole thing for me.

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