I Hate It And I Love It – The Climb #209

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I Hate It And I Love It – The Climb #209

Friday 18th August 2017

If it’s possible to both love something and hate it, then I have reached that stage of the novel.

I made great progress today.  So great, in fact, that I constantly stopped myself to double check I wasn’t becoming slapdash due to an overriding urge to get the novel done.

I can think of a million things I’d rather be doing rather than editing right now.  Staying focused and grinding away at the edits has required an extreme level of mental focus.  I’m bored of this now, I want it done.  I feel like I’m pushing words around rather than editing anything.

In truth, I’m being ruthless.  I still worrying I’m editing the charm out of the novel, but I suspect that it does well to edit dispassionately.  No darling is beyond being killed, and I suppose that is a good thing.

But I have a million TV series I want to watch.  I have nothing I NEED to do in World of Warcraft but I still want to play.  I have books I want to read.  Heck, I even want to clean the house.

I’m so bored of this novel.  I’ve read it so many times.  I’ve changed it so many times.  Surely if I ever had a chance of getting it ‘right’  I would have reached it by now.

And yet, there are redundant phrases, there are places where things can be tightened up.  Personally, I hate it when someone says you need to cut 10% of the novel because I believe a novel is as long as it needs to be.  But I’ve learnt that I overwrite emotions, I underwrite description.  Levelling up my editing has resulted in around a reduction of 25,000 words in this round of drafts.  It’s quite scary.

I think how long it took to write those 25,000 words – a couple of weeks?  There’s a temptation to think those weeks wasted, but I know that to get here, I had to go through that.  It’s part of the process of crafting a novel.

And that’s the thing.  I am actually enjoying the process of editing.  I can feel this slightly blurry story come into focus.  I can see the tricks, the slight of hand.  I’m employing all the cons writers use to make you think their world is real.

But given all that…

The book still makes me laugh out loud at moments.  There are still scenes where I’m mesmerised, even after so many edits and read-throughs.  I don’t know if other people will like this novel or not, but despite being in the fog of edits, there are times when this is my favourite book I’ve ever read.

And so, I continue to write the book for myself.  And that makes it a little easier.  It makes me go back over woolly patches and attack them with relish, turning them into something great.

I am naturally biased but it gives me hope that even on days like today, when the weight of writing and editing is heavy, I can read bits of what I’ve written and still fall in love with it all over again.  It’s easy to love your writing when you’re having a good day.  It’s days like today when it really matters.

I keep levelling up as a writer and I hope I always will.  Days like today are tough… they’re the days when it’s so tempting to say “it will do” rather than go back and do the hard work.  They require the same willpower as going and doing another set at the gym when you are totally knackered.

Thinking about my mentoring session this weekend and what I want to impart, I think back how the best things are created through simultaneous polar opposites.  And it’s true here.  Today I both love this novel and I hate it.

I’m proud that I managed to stay focused on a tough day and get the work done.  These are always the most rewarding.  I just hope I can continue it over the weekend and get close to getting the edit done.

If you want to follow more of my journey, then be sure to check me on my social channels.  Likewise, if you’d like me to expand on any point mentioned above, please say so in the comments.

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2017-08-19T13:31:52+00:00August 19th, 2017|Process, The Climb, Writing|0 Comments

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