Irony and the writers’ ego

My writing career has finally reached a level of success where I can afford an editor. I can’t tell you how much relief that has given me. What is somewhat ironic is that I have reached this level only to find out my earlier work needs SERIOUS re-writing. Let me explain.

Today I got a call from my life-saving editor to tell me that my book she is currently editing needs some serious work! I had a feeling this would be the case as this book was written during a fairly challenging time in my life and I pretty much just set it aside after it was finished. The book in question, Gothica, has a very good story, making use of one of my favorite characters I have written to-date…but ultimately had technical issues which led to confusion and an incoherent plot. Thank God for editors!

My editor, I must say, is amazing. And I certainly have my work cut out for me now. She will soon be returning to me a spreadsheet with necessary changes. These changes involve:

  • Moving, deleting, or integrating chapters.
  • Changing POV in certain chapters.
  • Rewriting and adding transition scenes for moved or deleted chapters.

Of course, anyone reading this who writes is cringing at the moment. It’s going to be a lot of work and knowing it’s being done on a book that was written nearly seven years ago could easily sting a bit. But it doesn’t. Why? Simple.

I knew this book had issues. Early on in  my career I was attempting to use writing tricks that take years to master (Flashbacks within flashbacks, multiple POVs, and more). Today I could probably write this same book and have a first draft turn out much better than what I published.

From my perspective, the journey of an indie writer is a series of lessons, some of which have rather bitter pills to swallow. But ultimately I have had to learn to never release a book before it’s ready…no matter how much time you have spent on it.

Gothica will return. I just created a new cover for the book (take a look here) and will be re-releasing Gothica within a week or two. When the book lands I will release it at a special price that will please readers and make up for lost time.

Being a writer involves developing a rather thick skin to protect the ego. I have been many things in my life and know how easily bruised the ego can be. But I view the temporary pulling of Gothica as a very strong step forward and not a step backwards. It’s all in the pursuit of perfection for my work.