Over the last three days, I realized that Magic Shifts needed a major revision. This notion first occurred to me on Thursday and I resisted it with everything I had because the book is already late and it’s not close to done. Last thing I want is to complicate the process any further. Unfortunately, it stayed with me, eating at my brain. The problem is that when we write a book, it has to be our best effort. The object of the game isn’t to write a fast book or to turn something in, but to write a good book that people will enjoy reading. Magic Shifts is perfectly serviceable. But I don’t want to do perfectly serviceable when it could be better.
This is likely why I will never be financially as successful as some of the other writers. I can’t do four books a year. I can’t write 5,000 words in a day – well, unless it’s a truly remarkable day. Gordon once asked what tattoo I would get if I wanted one and I told him I’d get a turtle. That’s how I feel professionally. Our career is sadly empty of meteoric rises. We steady climbed and plodded upward in our own slow way.
And just as well, in writing I rarely get a burst of brilliance and feverishly write down 20,000 words in a weekend. It’s just not me.
So undertaking a massive revision was so not the plan. However, on Friday I talked to Gordon about it and he agrees with me. Motivation is the book’s main drive; being personally invested is what pulls the readers through the narrative. We have to have a strong motivation, or the book will fail.
I am really frustrated by the set back. I am also oddly relieved, because even though there is a mountain of work between us and the end, at least we figured out how to streamline it. I hope that people will like the new motivation better. Because in fiction, it’s not the love or hate reaction that kills you. It’s the “meh.”
I have the new Scrivener file into which I will begin to cut and paste. I have a large supply of tea. Kids are promising to somewhat feed themselves. No time like the present.