Day 5: Five days, and five simple pieces of advice for new authors.
Day Five. . . Tip Five
Perfection is a lie. At some point you have to let it go. This is something I wish I knew earlier. That no book will ever be one hundred percent perfect. So much stress for perfection, so many hours trying to find that one final, mythical thing that’ll make it something worth loving forever. We should try our absolute best (see number 4) but at the end of the day, perfection is an illusion. Nothing in this universe is absolutely perfect, under a microscope, there is always spots that fall way outside the line. There will always be things you wish you changed. And in some ways, it’ll get less and less perfect as you grow. Much like how a twenty-year old college student can look back at the school work of their ten-year-old self and think it’s childish, such is the same with your novels. And they are special in their imperfection. They are a record of your particular brand of magic at that unique time in your life and that is what makes it special, not the mistakes or the lack of style or too many junk words, or the less defined characters. It is the you under all those rules that matters.
I see so many authors get caught on the quest for perfection. They edit and edit, tweak and tweak until they have 100,000 words of perfect sentences, with no heart and soul. Again, it is a fine line, between a clean, edited document, and a fear of failure that causes one to edit and edit and edit until the life goes out of their documents. You have to find that line for yourself, but as long as you are aware of it, you’ll be fine.
Be kind to yourself.
Honor your magic as unique.
And keep writing, even when it all feels flawed.
As the saying goes, the only thing you can’t fix is a blank page.