The other day, I talked about the three levels of editing, which was about the bare minimum needed to make a story clean.
And then there are some who never stop editing.
“Just one more pass, then it’ll be perfect.”
I know how that goes. You pull up a story, read through it again and of course there is a phrase to be improved. And before you know it – an editing pass happens.
The problem here is perfectionism.
You see, a story doesn’t have to be “perfect”.
It just has to be good enough that readers enjoy it.
And especially if you are an indie author, you can’t live on a single book per year. You need to get stories out there continuously, for readers to enjoy and remember you and eagerly snap up the next one. If they have to wait for a year, they have forgotten your name by the time you release the next one.
So how do you know that a story is good enough?
That’s what beta readers are for. They will let you know.
And that isn’t really the problem anyway.
The problem is letting go.
The thing that makes you cling to a story, makes you edit it “just once more” is fear. A very real and very simple fear: I’m not good enough.
The moment you send your story out in the world, it can be judged. And you can be judged as writer, and as person – that’s what it feels like.
So the safe thing to do is to keep the story at home. Edit it one more time. Polish it some more. Make it perfect.
And that way, you’ll never be judged.
Problem is, you also won’t experience the glorious joy of readers telling you how much they enjoyed it.
So you have to decide. Is it worth the risk? Do you dare to show your work to the world? Do you want the validation that only readers can give you?
Go for it.
What keeps you from showing your stories to the world?
Image source: F. Moebius
PS: If you want help with this problem and shift your fear of being judged or not good enough, click HERE and send me an email. We’ll talk about how I can support you best. I work internationally through Skype.
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