Doubts are setting in. Fully and completely.
Is my new book any good? Should I make more changes? Should I keep things the way there were? Will people read it? Will they enjoy it?
And the questions keep coming.
Each of these questions feels like a hit from an MMA fighter that I’ve no way to defend. They come at me head on. They come from the side. Sometimes they even sneak up from the back. But each is powerful and leaves me a little stunned.
I think there are several reasons for them.
For one, I’m having trouble adjusting to being back in Canada. It has me wondering if I’m going to make it here or if I’m going to jump on the next plane out. Which means my mind is already filled with doubts (admittedly having nothing to do with my writing, but doubts nonetheless).
For another, I’ve been working on this book a long, long time. Maybe too long. And I might be so invested in the story that I can’t see it anymore for what it is (or was).
Then there’s the fact that this is my second book and I keep comparing it to the first. It’s not that I actually compare the characters or plot. I don’t really even think the writing is much too different. What I mean is that there was an excitement I had when writing Glory that I don’t have with The King’s Son. There was also a level of trust that I can’t seem to duplicate.
To give you a little more background, I had written The King’s Son the month before I started work on Glory. But Glory ended up taking the next three years to complete. So when I got back to The King’s Son I had developed as a writer and thought there were several changes I needed to make to the original manuscript.
I made those changes. And then I worried about whether or not I should have. Even though the book definitely needed to be improved upon.
But now I don’t know if I have improved it. Maybe I just changed it. Maybe I made it worse.
Argh…the doubts continue.
Okay. Let’s get this back on track.
I don’t want to make this post sound like I’m pitying myself. And I don’t want it to look like I’m searching for sympathy.
But I do want to show doubting myself has become a very real aspect of my writing process.
And it sucks.
What makes it worse is that, since writing is so very personal, my doubts have begun to extend into myself. Those questions of my story being good turn into questions of me being a good writer and, on some level, even a good person.
And that sucks even more.
But that doesn’t mean that I’m going to give up. It just means that I’m going to keep pushing through it. And keep writing blog posts about it along the way.