The Life Cycle of a Novel: The First Doubt

Ah, and it doesn’t take long, does it? No sooner do words begin to intrude upon the perfection of the blank slate than the first doubt creeps in. Possibility turns to reality, and the reality never truly lives up to the dream. The first doubts are niggling, tearing at my confidence and trying to convince me to give up or turn back too soon. But this isn’t a final draft. This is an exploratory draft. Some sentences will be brilliant, some ideas will be brilliant, and some will need to get cleaned up in revision.

Doubt can drain the will of an author who is not strong enough to fight it. Doubt is inevitable, and to some extent it is true. There is no perfect book, there are only the ones we write.

Yet without doubt, our stories would never evolve past the rough draft.

So no sooner is the first word set to paper, then the first doubt suggests that it wasn’t the best first word. I am in doubt right now. I’ve written three chapters, and they’re no good. Well, maybe a bit from the first. And I did end chapter three well, it will lead nicely into the introduction of the romantic hero. But how will this ever grow from some whim of mine into a real, satisfying book?

Oh words! Have you failed me or have I failed you?

Posted in ChitChat, My Writing, Tips for Writers.