Sunday, June 8, 2014

Unfamiliar Territory

The revisions I've been working on have brought out a side of me seldom of much prominence in my life.  I've been second-guessing myself a great deal.

The intensity of this, for me, is nothing like the self-doubt I know many suffer every day, and I'm grateful for that.  But its very unfamiliarity is knocking me off-kilter.

The polishing work started when an agent whose opinion I'm willing to internalize (you can't take all the advice) gave me feedback I agreed with and wanted to implement.  That was April 10, and here almost two months later I am very well along in the MSS.  I've made some changes slightly off-script from the advice given, fleshed out a number of scenes and characters after the draconian cuts of the last revision, and ...

... of course.  I found a pretty serious continuity problem.

How I managed this is beyond me, but I left Queen Saint Clotilde pregnant for about a year and a half.

Oh dear.

Of course, a mechanical fix like this is not all that straightforward, what with the ankle bone being connected to the knee bone and the knee bone being connected to the thigh bone, and so on all the way up and then back down into the nervous and circulatory and circulatory systems.  I'm angry on a few levels, that this happened at all - bewildered at how I could have missed it - and that I can work on something for so long and still be finding something so profoundly wrong with it.

It's humiliating.  It leads me to question whether this publishing thing is ever going to happen at all - whether it should.

These questions, it must be said, last about one second or so and my confidence arrogance reasserts itself.  But then I come up against - "am I taking too long!? I wanted to get back into querying really quickly! - and "am I not taking long enough? will what I am doing be substantial enough?" - and (probably scariest of all, particularly after stripping tens of thousands of words out in the previous edit) "am I adding TOO MUCH BULK???"

All I can do is trust myself, be grateful this particular agent was kind enough to give me feedback, NOT hang all my hopes on that, and do the work.  Listen to a lot of Star Trek while wielding the keyboard on the MSS.  And soldier on.

Ax will get out there, and we're getting closer and closer to that time.  Get it done in this first half of the year.  Get agented before 2015.  And then ...

More writing.

Time for me to soldier on.

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