Are you working on a book and you feel like it will never be ready? You know what? That is COMPLETELY normal. I have been working on books for years and they still are not ready. Mostly because I have been writing fiction since I was twelve years old and have done quite of bit of growing up in the past fifteen years. I look at my stories even written five year ago and I shudder at the lack of setting, dialogue and description. The point is that you never not growing and developing so your books never stop until you decide they are full grown and ready to be published.
I have heard of actors not watching their movies after they are released because all they see are their flaws. It is very similar with writing a book. You edit the book, put it down for a little while, and then pick it up again only to have it covered in red pen. I love my books that are out but I can’t pick them up or I will redo the whole thing. I made the decision to publish them at that time and that is where they need to sit.
But wait! That doesn’t mean you should stop editing all together. Don’t publish your writing throw up just because you are afraid of more work. Editing and proofreading are vital for your book, and you for that matter. I have had to take books off my page because they were not fully edited like they should have been and I am thankful people have told me the errors along the way.
So editing is very important and should never be over looked. It can make a good book into a great book. Like right now I am working on a book I “finished” ten years ago. I thought I was the best author on the planet. I was like Stephanie Meyers or Francine Rivers (yes, I have a very diverse taste in books) in my own opinion, but looking at it now I am horrified. It’s a great outline but I would not consider it a great book right now. It’s only sitting at 46,000 words and I have already seen where six chapter breaks need to be added along with another 50,000 word minimum. It is a wreck, but then again I am not seventeen anymore. I have life experience to add to this book now that I didn’t have then. As it was my main character was only a year older than I was at the time. Talk about sounding awkward.
So now I am in the thralls of editing once again but it is because my book is not grown up. I grew up but my book hasn’t. After this growing pain period I am pretty sure it will be ready to be published but I have to patient. Editing shouldn’t be rushed. It must be done just right or the whole book can fall a part. The edits must help the story and not leave the reader with more questions than when the editing started.
I need to take my time and water the seeds of my own thoughts about what I was thinking and picturing in my head when I first wrote the book. It is important to never lose the original vision. I have read books that I can tell the author wrote one half of the book and then added to it and the two halves don’t make much sense together. I don’t want that to happen and neither to do you, dear reader. So take your time editing, but know when it is enough. Because the world needs to know your thoughts. They need to know your book and who you are. Don’t leave your audience waiting because you are still editing a book that has been ready to leave the nest for some time now.
I hope this has been helpful to you and know that the editing process will never stop for an author. You can always make it better but that might mean it will never see the light of day and no one wants that to happen. Happy publishing!