Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Stepping Back to Move Forward

Three months ago, I shipped a printed copy of my manuscript to my editor. I was a little stressed about mailing it . . . okay, a lot stressed. But at the same time, so relieved. I had reached that place where I had done so many rewrites, revisions, changes, etc, that I couldn't see the story anymore. Is this chapter crap or should it stay? What about the beginning, is it better now or before? I couldn't say and was unable to make a decision or even have an opinion about my writing. I had grown sick of my story and it was time to take a break. 

A few days ago, I received a package. Inside was my manuscript with my editor's notes, comments, suggestions and most importantly, her encouragement. <3 I dove back in, page by page, and realized a good break was exactly what I needed. Five chapters into my edits, and I'm in love with my story all over again. I'm now embracing this rekindled excitement and I'm determined to get this wip finished and ready for querying before April. 
It will be done. 

How about you guys? Ever get to this point? What helped 'bring back that lovin' feeling?' (; 


  1. No doubt, stepping away from it for a while helps to rejuvenate your enthusiasm for you story.

  2. That's awesome you are excited about it again! I'm sure your editor had some good suggestions.
    I enjoy the editing phase, so I never end up hating my manuscript. I'm least excited when I first begin (I'm sure that sounds odd) but that excitement grows as I work on it.

  3. Well done, you've got your mojo back!

  4. I'm right where you were - pre-sending the ms out, but buoyed with the CP/beta love, I'm excited for the future.


    I don't have my fingers crossed :)

  5. Yes, I've been there. Stepping away is the best thing to do. It gives you new eyes and insight. Good luck on the edits.

  6. Oh I have been there so many times! You reach a point when all you see in front of you is crap - and it only feels that way because you've been working so long, and all the words look repetitive. A good break is always needed before edits!

  7. Richard: It certainly has in my case. (:

    Alex: My editor is awesome. And yes, I think it's weird you find the beginnings of your projects the least exciting, lol! I have trouble with the middle...:/

    Sally: Three cheers, mojo is back! :D

    Mark: I'm looking forward to reading your book. (:

    Sara: Thanks! (:

    Kyra: Yes! Everything looked the same, I just couldn't stand it any longer. Things are much better now. Third time's the charm, maybe? (:

  8. Breaks are great!
    Happy that you're back with your MS! ;)

  9. yeah i hear you, sometime a big break from it can make all the difference. When you get too close to a manuscript you reach the point where you just can't tell if it's good or bad but after a long break you see way more of the flaws ... and also the gold!

  10. I know I've been to that point before, when your editing it so much you fear the story has lost its original zing. Sometimes it takes a fresh set of eyes to steer you in the right direction. CPs are wonderful for this. :)

  11. Oh isn't it confirming to be reminded you love your story and your writing. Good for you!

  12. Breaks are good. Absence makes the heart grow fonder. So glad you got your "loving feeling" back.

  13. Jackie: Thanks Jackie, it feels great! :D

    DS! Well hello stranger! (;

    David: I agree completely. Feels good when you get that motivation back too.

    Julie: Yes! And thanks Julie. (:

    Linda: Hi Linda! I'm finally realizing how important breaks can be. It's great to have that motivation back. (:

  14. It is hard to stay as excited at the end of a draft as you were at the beginning. Even the middle can be a bit of a slog. Glad it all sparked up again for you.

  15. A little time away gives us a new perspective. Sounds trite, but it works. I like to write scenes, so I do that when I can't look at one project anymore. Those scenes can be developed into stories or chapters. Works for me.

    1. Good idea. I should try this next time I start running out of steam. I enjoy writing scenes anyway. Thanks for the tip. (:

  16. Hi Elise,

    Ah yes, time out to reflect, to recharge those batteries, does work wonders. And your positive resolve displays your undaunted passion to keep moving along that inspirational road.

    Maintain that loving feeling. I know, even though I write for therapy, the love never really subsides.

    In kindness and fulfilling writing, your way,


  17. Taking time away from the manuscript is a must, I think. I usually get to the point where I either think it is all crap or all brilliant, and then I need my CPs' help in figuring out what is still crap and what is still brilliant. LOL!

  18. I've been there done that, for sure. It is tough when you get to that line editing phase. The polish is the worst part. I'm glad you've found that loving feeling again. :)

  19. Yes! It's called editing hell! :)

  20. Good for you! I get sick of them too when they're almost done. All work and no play and all that...

  21. I put mine away for 2 months after I finished the first draft. I needed the break for sure! I'm in love again (just don't tell my boyfriend) :D

  22. I agree with you. It takes putting it down for a while and reading it over for you to fall in love with the story and characters again. I feel for you though, because it seems no matter how many people I have read and edit the work, when it comes to making the changes, there're always more changes to make on top of those.

  23. Yes - a good break does the trick! I'm taking a break of writing right now and once I'm motivated, I write like crazy. But I haven't had the motivation to write - I've been so dang busy with life! Hopefully before Spring, I'll be refreshed and write movie reviews and dive into fiction (like all my awesome writers in the blogosphere!) :)

    Good luck on the revisions and edits! You can do it! And please let us know the good news when the time comes: you gettin' rep'd by a fab agent!

  24. I'm at the I-hate-you stage with my WIP. I'm hoping to get that loving feeling again.

    Good luck!

  25. Woohoo! Good for you! Go! Go! Go! :D

  26. Gary: Yes, I think taking time out to reflect is what I need the most right now, just need to make time. Do you have the recipe for it by chance. (;

    lawolf: Merci mon loup! (:

    Cherie: I totally agree. I'm at the stage where I think, heck...it's not THAT bad. (:

    Ciara: I just hit a page with no edits on it and thought, wow I must have written this page pretty well...and then I thought, naa my editor must have accidentally missed it, lol!

    Mina: I think the devil sold his soul to an editor...

    Joy: Thanks Joy, I know the feeling....

    Sam: LOL! Your secret is safe with me, unless he decided to become a follower! :D

    Nancy: Is there no end to the editing phase, LOL! :D

    Livia: Being busy with life is a good thing Livia, it's where you'll be able to draw inspiration from later on when the muse hits. I have a feeling once you start, you'll be on fire with your writing! (:

    Melissa: Oh Melissa, I hope you get that loving feeling back too! The I-hate-you stage is always a drag. Maybe a short break would help. (:

    Melissa: I'm going, going, going.....

  27. I so completely hear you on this! The last round of edits I did had me swearing I'd written the most crappy book over. (This may still be the case, but I do feel a little better about it now!) Good luck getting ready to query--I'm right there with ya!

  28. I get that alot and I handle it the same way you did; a break.

  29. very excited to get editors notes! and a break is always a good thing! yay for you!

  30. Stepping away does help. I'm enjoying the brief lull before my latest comes back from the editor. I can't name the last time I had a day off. Nice.

  31. Stepping away helps really see the parts I love vs the parts I thought were so awesome, but really are only mediocre. How nice to fall in love with your story all over again.

  32. That's very exciting. So you print out a copy and work in actual paper? Yowsa. I like Microsoft Word and the editing tools that are available in Microsoft Word. Makes changing so much simpler.

    I bet your novel is awesome, Elise. I can't wait to read it.

    I noticed your avatar on Goodreads. How come you don't use one of the cool drawings you do of yourself? They have such personality.

  33. Isn't it great to fall in love with your story again just when you thought you've had enough of it? An author once told me that when we start getting sick of our story, it means we're doing something right...

  34. Go Elise! Got your mojo back girl!! *virtual high-5*

  35. Hi Elise .. that sounds excellent news .. have fun and have much more good luck from now on to publication ... cheers Hilary

  36. Congrats on the excellent feedback! There's nothing like it.

    Taking time away definitely does help. It helps me see what would need changed in the story, however, I still need CPs' help to judge whether it is any good, even after changes! I can't seem to work that out at any time, lol.

  37. I've just started diving back into my NaNo piece, and I really like it. I was terrified to look at it again, afraid it was better in my mind than on paper. But, it's there... on the page. What a wonderful feeling. Now to get it ready to go to an editor and start begging my friends to be beta readers. *wink*

  38. Maradeth: I bet your book is fantastic. I really want to read Color like Memories!

    Melanie: Yeah, I think a lot of people do. A break really helps put things back into perspective.

    Tara: Her notes are awesome. :D

    Jenn: It's a great feeling, hope it lasts. (:

    Michael: I'll come up with another avatar. (:

    Cynthia: "An author once told me that when we start getting sick of our story, it means we're doing something right..." Then there is hope for me yet!

    Michelle: High 5! Woot!!

    Hilary: Thank you! (:

    Nick: CPs and beta readers are so important, but sometimes you have to trust your gut, Nick. I've read some of the things you've posted on your site and I really enjoy your writing style,it's excellent.

    Patrycja: Funny, you posted the exact same comment on my last post...if you keep spamming me, I'm going to unlike your fanpage. Thanks.

    Tia: I'm sure your friends would love to beta read. *wink*

  39. I've never corresponded with an editor, but it sounds quite nice. Good for you, Elise!

  40. Love this! So exciting, Elise! :D

    I usually go through a period of slight depression when I realize what I need to fix before I get that lovin' feeling again. :D

  41. Yep. It happens to me, too! Glad you're feeling refreshed and ready to work on it again!


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