Friday, April 22, 2016

Trust the Process

I’ve read recently that you have to “trust the process.”

For me, it’s difficult to trust something that’s slow, convoluted, and sporadic. That seems to characterize my process.

I’ve had great news—I have a publisher—with the contract will come another round of content editing. I welcome it in that I want my work to be its best. However, I don’t like the feeling of inadequacy, like what I’ve got so far isn’t good enough. I don’t mind changes and improvements. I just don’t want to start over. I like how my protagonist has unfolded and discovered her strengths. It has meaning for me. But does it fit the exact formula for a cozy mystery? Usually the main character arrives on scene fully formed. She or he faces down conflicts and surmounts obstacles, their circumstances change, so do they, but not enough to create a whole new persona. They were whole to start with. Not with my new adult. She’s still coming into being.

I also began to write my version of a stump speech. What I want to say when I try to defend myself to the possible backlash. Stories need conflict, something to get things moving. I picked one that will probably offend a few people. I knew that, but now the time will come where I’ll have to tell real people just why I did it. Talk about being out of ones’ comfort zone.

In writing that speech, I realized I’d missed the boat in actually stating one of my main themes. One sentence doesn’t cut it. I had to go back in and fix this before the manuscript went off to the new editor.

I also have more feedback from another trusted source. I haven’t been through all of it. I know I have to, but I keep putting it off. I AM a big chicken and an expert procrastinator.

Times up. I have to dive back in and make the changes. Again, it is a relief to get going, to see that everything isn’t as bad as I might have imagined. It just needs to be BETTER.

For me, that’s the process.

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