Facing the Beast

Alright, it has been some time since I’ve written a tip and figure I stop being lazy and get back on track so, here I am. Wednesday, 6:10am as I write this post for Friday, 6am.

Alright, now that’s out of the way, I want to talk about something called “Facing the Beast” at least, that’s what I call it.

Facing the beast is when you have a finished draft of a novel, manuscript, whatever-you-wanna-call-it and you feel like it’s not finished. Not even close.

You read other novels and compare it to yours, subconsciously of course, and you feel like every novel you read is better than yours.

Sound familiar?

Anyway, when you go back to your own novel, you know what needs to be done, you know what you need to do to get your novel to the place it needs to get to but you don’t feel you’re skillful enough to do it.

You have this five, six hundred pager, ready to go but at the same time not ready to go and you’re just stuck. So, what the hell to do next?

The answer seems simple: just get to work and start editing.

Well, here’s the thing.

This five, six hundred page novel you have is already intricate and set up in a specific way. You can’t just go int there and muck around without having it affect everything else. If you change one thing in chapter one, you may have to change something in chapter thirty and forty-five.

Get it? If you change one thing, you gotta change everything so it’s all or nothing and that’s the bitch about it, isn’t it?

Well, there is a way around this.

  1. spend time away from the novel or work

when you’ve been working at it day in and day out, it can get pretty exhausting and kind of pull you out of life as a hole. The more you sit with a problem the more it grows. Sometimes, the best thing is to just let it go for a few days or eternities and voila! the answer comes to you

2. Write out everything you think you need to do then go see if you actually need to do it.

Well, this party is tricky because when you look at your work you don’t see the problems because it’s your work. Basically, you may be too close to it. However, you can still do this without critique (especially if you think your story should remain in the dungeon). Start off with the general then get into the specific, after you toil and struggle to plan things out, spend time away from that plan as well and maybe, MAYBE, you can sit down and start editing.

3. Break up the novel or work into manageable parts.

This one is self-explanatory but I’ll explain anyway. If you have a six hundred page novel, focus on only one hundred pages per week or fifty pages or whatever is comfortable (and no, no pages worked on isn’t an option). When you break it up like this, you can look at a larger picture and attain more clarity as to what needs to be changed, deleted, or just tweaked. Sometimes, you find out that you don’t need to change anything and that you’re just a sniveling perfectionist trying to create god-like content on the first go.

So yeah, that’s all I have for you guys. Till next week . . .

Tell me what you think in the comments! I read and reply to all of them and welcome feedback for improving my stories, poetry, and insights. Thanks for reading!

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