You know that heart pounding moment, that split second when you realize that everything seems to be unraveling in front of your eyes. Your whole body feels heavy and your mind is racing with any and all options to pull it all together. For me, that moment happened when I decided to branch into novels for the first time. I have been writing poetry since I was in grade school. It seemed so easy; just pour out your emotions into verse and just write it all out off the top of your head. Yeah. Easy. While poetry breaths a life of its own, a novel is a different monster all together.
All of a sudden there are people you need to weave into a landscape with props and somehow make them all interact without making them seem uninteresting. You write a life into them, a reason, a purpose. You develop whole worlds for people to immerse themselves. All while doing this you need to think about twists, plot, storyline, characterization, and audience.
It is super easy for everything to unravel while playing at this balancing act. Sometimes I feel like I’m juggling while trying to balance on a ball with thousands of eyes watching for me to fail. I guess in many ways it is just like that. One little flaw and the tiger will pounce and eat up the mouse.
So how do you keep it all together? How do you pick up those pieces, tie up those loose threads? Well, I may not have the perfect answer but I do have an answer. You don’t. Write the story and let editors and proofreaders tie up loose ends. Take advice. Improve your work with feedback. It’s scary and extremely hard to let hard work go into the hands of someone who may or may not just tear it apart and leave nothing but red marks all over the paper.
BUT… But you wrote it. You came up with the ideas, you wrote them on paper, you had the drive and courage to get it out there. Be happy and proud of where you are and use those red marks to better what you have already tried to perfect.
I began writing novels because I had full stories stuck in my head I wanted to get out. They are an escape for me and I’ve realized that I want them to be an escape for others as well. So I write and I send them out for people to read and critique knowing that not everyone will like it and that not everyone will be able to understand what I’m trying to say. I’ve realized that it only takes one person to smile at what they are reading and to turn eager eyes on me and say “and then what” for me to be happy with what I’ve done.
So with that being said I’m planning to turn back to this novel I’ve been fighting with and just see how everything will come together. If, in the end, it’s all a mess I have help to figure it all out and put it back on track. I suggest you all do the same.