A time to stop editing

Remember my literary pause? Well, the time has come to stop editing because ♥My Book♥ has turned into :(My Book 🙁 .

Yep, that point in time has come when I’m convinced the whole thing is a pile of garbage. It’s dumb, everyone will hate it, and total strangers will stop me on the street to offer to write me a rejection letter. “Dear Author: Please rewrite this before you throw it away, otherwise the landfill will be offended.”

Once a writer hits that point, it’s time to take an editorial pause. I’ve got a few other things I want to do anyhow. I’ll return in a while with my head in the game again.

I know there are still issues, but the problem with editing when I’m in :(My Book 🙁 phase is that I can’t get any perspective on this: are the problems cosmetic? Fatal? Nonexistent? 

Once I’m in this state, it’s also not clear whether my changes help or hurt. It’s best just to leave it alone. I’ll be back in a week. Let it sit and think about what it’s done.

Of course, I may still tinker. I may remember that line in that scene which would work better the other way. But for now, it needs to rest. Rise like pizza dough, only to be punched down again, knowing that second punch-down will help it rise even further.

I’m such a mean author.

I have a short story I wrote in January that needs to get re-edited. I’m going to submit a couple of poems to a magazine with a deadline coming up. I have a query letter to write to a parenting magazine. And I need to follow up with the editors about the Seven Archangels novels. That’s not even to mention the baby blanket I’m trying to knit for benefit raffle (for the preschooler with stage IV cancer There’s plenty to do. Plenty of reason to tuck in the manuscript and let it sleep for a while.

I still feel urgent, like I want to finish it now. More than that, though, I want it to feel like ♥My Book♥ again.