You are halfway through writing the first draft of your book. It was exciting at first, but now you start to question why you started. You wonder if you should actually spend the time finishing.
Even if you do finish it, would anyone be interested in reading it?
Voices in your mind tell you it isn’t good, yelling about how your grammar is bad, your plot has more holes than a fishing net, and your characters aren’t doing what you told them to.
You feel like it doesn’t matter what you choose to do with it now. In reality, this is one of the most important parts of the writing process.
Everyone who has attempted to write a book has had thoughts similar to these. Not everyone finished writing the book. Right then, right when you feel like quitting, that is when you need to make a valuable decision.
You are faced with the choice of continuing on, working past the all the repeated words and scenes that don’t make sense, or giving up. I encourage you to keep going.
Shannon Hale, author of award winning Princess Academy, once put it this way: “I am writing a first draft and reminding myself that I’m simply shoveling sand into a box so that later I can build castles.”
That is exactly what you are doing. I want you to keep shoveling that sand, because the castle isn’t going to come without it.
When you get to the point of giving up, choose to write on. It is worth it, and one day you will thank yourself. Nobody ever wrote a book by quitting when it got hard. They pushed through. You can push through too.
Any completed story, no matter how trashy you may think it is, is far more impressive than a blank story. It is hard for everyone, not just you. The people that decide to keep going and writing, those are the people that you see a couple years later at a book signing in your local book store. Go ahead and ask them, they will tell you it wasn’t easy. They kept writing, however.
Imagine your favorite book along with all of its’ wonderful plot twists, strong characters, beautiful world building, and well written conflict. It is a wonderful book, isn’t it?
I am going to let you in on a little secret. That book, the one you find almost flawless, is not the first draft. It likely isn’t even the second or third.
It took hours of editing and tossing out all the junk to get it so seemingly perfect.
So don’t worry about how your first draft is, it is just the beginning of the writing cycle. Focus on getting to the end of it.
That is one of the best feelings in the world.
Don’t let the voices in your mind stop you. Keep writing, it is well worth it.
Happy Day 15 of NaNo.