Our topic for this month's Insecure Writers' Support Group is "When do you know your story is ready?" My pat answer has always been, stop when your edits are just making it different, not better. There's no end to how many different roads your story can take (just ask Google Maps!) so if you don't pick one and stay with it until you reach your destination, you can circle the same neighborhood forever.
But more often than not, deadlines, like oven timers, are often our signal that our stories are ready (or not!) to submit. There simply isn't another minute for a quick read through or last format check. It's got to go, and it's got to go NOW! I always tell myself I won't be in that last minute position again, but despite best laid plans, here I am trying to get my long overdue project, PRINCE OF HONOR, out the door and onto the virtual shelves in the next two weeks. I mean I really, really love planning and organizing and details and being hands on, but give me those olden days when offering a bookmark if they sent an SASE was as far as I had to go once I proofed my galleys.
That was when being an author was just about writing the book.
Lately, as I venture farther into the world of self-pubbing, the focus isn't on the story anymore. It's about all the trimmings like cover and blurb and PR kit. It's about timing release info and scheduling blogging events and preorders. The story almost becomes lost under the pile of peripherals that some unnamed person in New York used to handle for my titles. But now it's up to me to learn how to do it, or find someone to do it for me. And it's exhausting.
I'd like to say once this latest child ventures into the world I can kick back and take a breather. But no, book two in my new four book House of Terriot shape-shifter spin-off series is already breathing down my neck with things I must attend to. Right now.
Ready or not . . .
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!
Posting: The first Wednesday of every month is officially Insecure Writer’s Support Group day. Post your thoughts on your own blog. Talk about your doubts and the fears you have conquered. Discuss your struggles and triumphs. Offer a word of encouragement for others who are struggling. Visit others in the group and connect with your fellow writer - aim for a dozen new people each time.
Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!
Twitter hashtag is #IWSG