There isn’t a lot that truly scares me. I am, after all, a mystery thriller writer who actually enjoys killing folks in the pages. There is one thing that does terrify me though…an unfinished manuscript. Those things can haunt you for a lifetime…I know…I have several haunting me as we speak.
As a writer it is important to understand that if you allow a manuscript to “go cold” there is a chance that you many never finish it. Mine, there are two, stare at me from the computer desk top every day. I hover over them with my mouse once in a while and then quickly click on something else, avoiding them yet again. Why do I do this? Simple…because I am afraid that I have lost the story flow.
I do need to finish these books and I promise myself every New Years that I will. Since 2006 one of them has been the subject of one of these promises over and over. I actually got to the point of opening the file once not too long ago but then I started to shake uncontrollably and had to shut it again. If I had attempted to work on it would it be as good as I had first envisioned?
The thing is, not only would it be as good but it might actually turn out better for a number of reasons. First off my perception is different than when I first began. I have grown as a writer so it makes sense that the writing would improve. Also, I have grown in my character development and with the changing times there are more options for my characters than there was 10+ years ago. It simply stands to reason that it would be better…IF I just finished the damn thing.
I challenge you, like I am challenging myself, to pull an old manuscript out of the drawer and finish it. If you don’t those sucker will haunt you to your grave and get in the way of your new writing. I have discovered lately that some of my writer’s block might actually have more to do with the fact that I never finished these books…so I’m going to do it. Open that drawer folks and get to work…you’ll thank me for it…honest.
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