My new editor just sent me the first go-round for book 3. It’s still nerve wracking as hell for me when I first see that email. I scan all the documents looking for any indication of something seriously wrong or words of encouragement. This editor is more technical than the one I usually get to work with. It’s all good, but I can already tell this is going to be a very different experience than I’m used to.
As I get further into writing I’m becoming more annoyed with my high school English classes. I remember hating with a passion the free-writing we had to do at the beginning of class. No one bothered explaining that spelling, grammar, plot, none of it mattered. Rough drafts should be just that—rough. Spending time figuring out the correct spelling of a particular word takes the writer out of the story. Had I run that class I’d have deducted for crossed out and corrected words, but I didn’t have a say. My inner critic worried about every word I stumbled over. The plots embarrassed me. How was I supposed to come up with something interesting to say and express it in fifteen minutes? This isn’t the first time I’ve found my education had gotten in the way of my passion. I used to say I did have a degree in art, but I hoped I was becoming a reasonable artist anyway. It’s been forty years and high school still bugs me.
Today I start off with a dilemma. I’m on the downhill run with my current story, but I’m at a section that’s taking a lot of thought. Then there’s the manuscript with red marks all over every page. Both projects are calling to me, though for very different reasons. One will require a lot of brainstorming, which over the last few days it already has, and the other will have me back doing technical cleanup. With clear skies today hopefully we’ll finally get a walk in so I can clear my head and decide which way the day will take me.