Moving On

Blog Post No. 495

il_570xn.3108893424_igudIt’s been about a decade since I really started to get into writing. It’s something I knew I wanted to do when I was rather young, but it took a long time for me to get over the first big hump and actually learn how to write. I’ve had the occasion to talk to a lot of folks about writing over the years (usually, happily). Some of them mention wanting to write but are intimidated with the process. I always tell them that writing is actually not that hard. It takes getting used to criticism and some work to learn the proper structure, but I honestly believe that almost anyone can do it.

The hard part is doing it every day until a story is finished. It’s not the only challenge, but it was the one that held me back for so long. I’ve learned a lot since then and one of the important realizations I’ve come to recently is learning when and how to move on.

infestedChristian just released a new novel under the pseudonym C.M. Forest. It was scheduled to come out in June, but the publisher did a surprise early release on Friday the 13th. Brittni also has a book coming out soon. She was planning on having it come out around June, too. That made me think that since the April release for Snow from a Distant Sky was so close (and fairly arbitrary) that maybe I should hold off so we could do a big release together.

Also, at the time I was a little behind and the thought of more time was appealing. It wasn’t like I had to get it out for Shock Stock, since I couldn’t go anyway. Ultimately, it was better that I didn’t postpone. Christian released early and it looks like Brittni is closing in on a July release. More importantly, if I had waited, I would have just kept working on it, not getting anything else done and potentially making it worse.

han-shot-firstI tend to get burnt out in the edits and have to buckle down to keep up a good pace, so it’s possible I would have just procrastinated for most of that extra time, but it still wouldn’t have guaranteed the book would be any better for it. Deadlines and limitations can be good for productivity and creativity. (Not that they always are). No book is ever going to be perfect and looking back on everything I’ve written, there are things I would change if I were writing the story now.

Growth and perspective are inevitable. Rather than go back and make those changes, I think a better use of time and energy is to make something new. (Not that one method works for everyone). I have gone back and fixed obvious typos in my books, but I have tried really hard to not go any farther. The temptation is there, but if I don’t move on from a book, I’ll never get anything else finished. And I mean, look at the Star Wars re-releases. You don’t need any more evidence than that.

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