Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The "N" Word

New Sign

I know what you're all thinking.  "Sacre Bleu! What is she talking about?"  But I guarantee you that if you haven't already, you're going to experience it at one point or another....I did.

That's right, *breath*, I can do it.  Someone asked me recently:

"Hey, how's your manuscript going?" 

To which I replied:

"Well, actually, I'm working on a "NEW" project...."

Short and sweet right? 

But what I was really thinking was:

Baby "Oh No!"
"Oh god, I can't believe I just admitted to working on a new project when the one I've been working on for the past year is still only half way done and sitting in a drawer at the back of my closet.  I'm never going to get anything done!  I give up! Freak of nature!  Zero talent!  And run on sentences!  And sentences that begin with "and".....and...."

You get the picture.

It's easy to get down on yourself.  I admit, I've been guilty of equating "starting something new" to "failure".  How many times have I told myself "that's not going to be me".  But here I am, in the throws of a brand spanking new project.

The good news is that the "N" word doesn't have to be a bad word.  

Was it manuscript fatigue? 

Something not working in the current story?

Something exciting about the new one?

Focusing on the positive is hard, but I can honestly say (after much introspection) that my early endeavour was not for naught.  I learned SO MUCH from my first manuscript.  I learned about what makes a good story, what my strengths are and what I need to improve on (not to mention, a lot about myself in the process).  I went to workshops with the material and worked on it with agents and editors.  I understand better where the market is now and where it's going and also what I want to present as my first book (should it get *fingers crossed* published). 

All that helped me to develop my "new" idea.  One that feeds off the knowledge that I gained and that fits my wants and needs and excites me all at the same time.  

It's not to say I won't finish my first manuscript, maybe I'll come back to it later.  But I've gained a new appreciation for writing, which really is like a relationship.  You've got to nurture and work on it through the good times and the bad, but sometimes, a new boyfriend may be just what you need. 


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. In the immortal words of Kenny Rogers (the singer not the baseball player):'Ya gotta know when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em,' and know when to break out a new deck. Good for you, Jenn. I admire your willingness to take a gamble. I'm banking on your talent to see you through!

  3. Sometimes it's tough to know when it's time for something new, but I think as long as you learned from the last manuscript, you're in good shape. It just means your next manuscript will be even better!

  4. Oh, but I do hope you go back to it! I was intrigued with that story--I can still picture it in my mind!

  5. Write what you love. Love what you write. And when the story inside you takes over - just enjoy the ride!

  6. Thanks everyone! All great words to live by :)