First Draft Hatred

Anne C. Miles > Writing > First Draft Hatred

Apparently this isn’t new, but this week as I got to the last of my chapters (I have about 3 left to write) I was hit with full-blown hatred for my story. I am certain its the worst piece of fiction ever penned and should be burned and never see the light of day. It’s rubbish. I know this with every fiber of my being. Every adverb, plothole, echo and overuse of “nodding/smiling/shaking his head.” is not only glaringly apparent, they’re accusing me. With pitchforks.

Ahhhhh the demons are here.

Why yes Dean, yes I did. Steven Pressfield calls it the Resistance. I call it demons. Potato, potahto.

The point is, if your book is a light, it has a shadow. And the bigger the light, the worse the shadow that hits you. So I’m pretty darn sure that this all-out wave of loathing is actually a good sign. And I can’t edit a blank page.

So I’m going to keep fighting and finish. Ship.

Those people posting self-help how-to articles on Twitter are legion. The other side effect of my demons is that I also want to gut these know-it-all do gooders. Seriously. I’m fantasizing about it.

I want them to leave me wallowing in my misery, a hollow, sour shell. Basically, I don’t want to be fixed. I want to wallow. Self-pity is my drug. Because underneath all of this is the real arrow being sent at my heart.

There is no fixing it, the problem isn’t the story, the problem is me. 

I do not agree with that and I absolutely believe this message is coming from outside me. But wow, it feels true, and the message is loud and clear. I’m so glad I know that what feels true is not what is true.

Anyhow. I’m trudging, slogging through this morass of inner stupid. The words are not coming, they feel rusty, used and humdrum when they do. The arrows aimed at me are thick and hitting hard. But I’m pouring all of that into the description of the shadowkin as they chase Sara, Shand and Dane.

The next wave to hit me will be overconfidence. I’ll be fully convinced that this story is perfect and should not under any circumstances be edited. I know it’s the next thing coming, likely right after I finish. My demons are bipolar and completely irrational. Aren’t they cute?

You know what it reminds me of? It reminds me of being pregnant.

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