How I Feel About the Editing Process
When it comes to taking critique, I can honestly say I'm pretty open-minded. Like anything, it took a while to build up a thick enough skin to hear things about your own work that aren't so great. A big chunk of editing is pointing out flaws. By now, the only critiques that can get under my skin are ones coming from a bad or rude place. I haven't experienced many of those, but it really punches me in the gut when it happens.
I am currently over the halfway mark in book one edits. I have heard horror stories about this process: edits. I admit my stomach was tied up in knots leading up to it, but I'm happy to say the whole experience has been quite positive. The only bad feelings stem from myself and lack of self-confidence. For me, it's not so much about the changes that are being made, as I agree the story and my writing isn't perfect. Every change made thus far has been for the better--for clarity and fluidity. Instead, the thing that weighs on me is the fact that I made such silly mistakes to begin with. Feelings of embarrassment like, 'duh, Parris, this line IS cliché or on the nose.' I'm glad I have someone who can point things like this out because in the end, I want the final product to be a good as possible.
One thing I found I've done (and I didn't even realize it until I started thinking on it for this blog) is that I've broken my emotional attachment to my story. Purposefully. The brain has ways to protect itself and mine has sort of blocked away my feelings. I view edits as an assignment, like it's someone else's piece of work that I'm tweaking with a buddy. A team project. If there's a problem, I fix it and move on. Even bigger things like moving a chunk of the story to a better suited place felt easy. A couple years ago I would have over analyzed and stressed. I think all the stress has moved to drafting book two. Yeah, that's where it went. Even thinking about now is making my wrists do that weird adrenaline tingle. Anyone else get that?
All in all, the most important thing is having a good editor and being able to communicate with them. Everyone involved needs to be on the same page/have the same vision. I'm feeling good about things and my nerves and excitement continue to grow as the publish date approaches.