Looking Back on My Work

facepalm_polarbearAuuugh, the agony.

Okay, I’m being melodramatic. But do you ever feel accomplished at how far you’ve come, and then look back on your work at the beginning…and groan? Because you’re proud of where you are, but you won’t ever be done when you feel like you’re done, because of that THING in the beginning! It blazes forth like a red flag—like an atrocity. Because now, this far down the line, you can see what’s wrong with it. And once you see it for its true shape, you can’t unsee the flaws.

Originally when I started writing my Beauty and the Beast story, I was experimenting with first person, and with a more abrupt style of writing designed to pack a punch with every line. As a detailed person who always narrated in third person omniscient, what I was attempting was quite the challenge.

When I revised the story, I had just taken two British Literature college courses, and the style that flowed out beneath my pen strongly reflected my recent flowery, contemplative reading material.

Now I’m doing the face-palm again, because after reading so many articles about writing, and after rereading some descriptive adult fiction books that are on my forever-favorites list, I finally see what all those bloggers and instructional authors meant about “overdoing it.” “Purple prose, they called it. Whatever; the name sounds stupid to me, and like most stupid-sounding things, I dismissed it at the time. But now I can see it, and it makes me want to rend my garments in angst.

Right. Melodrama. Ahem.

I’ve got to say, in light of this revelation, I am rather humbled that so many of you—my readers—have stuck with me for so long. My revisions may have made my story better, but I still have a long way to go. I’m much closer now to the writing style I want to present to the world as my own, but I wouldn’t be surprised if an agent or publisher turned my manuscript away based solely on the beginning.

But I really like this story—and I think a lot of you do too, which is why you have stuck with the story even through my long update delays and my sweeping-scale revisions. So I’m gonna roll up my sleeves, and dive back into the muddy mess that I’ve made…and try to pull out that true story that you’re all sticking around for.

If I were going to make a New Year resolution, I suppose that would be it. But as a child I developed this horrible habit of never following through on my New Year resolutions. So I’m not going to jinx it. 😉

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3 responses to “Looking Back on My Work

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