So I am writing a story for our ebook. I have the blessing/curse of not having it judged. I have to do the judging myself. And in the process of writing and editing, I have written (or am in the middle of writing) 3 different stories. Completely different ideas and execution. Why, you ask? Because the first two were garbage. This third one I am cautiously optimistic about. I think I finally have the right tone, subject, and overall vehicle for what would be best for the book.
We all do this judging and rejecting. But I'm not talking about those moments where you're sure everything you've ever written is total yuck and deserves to be flushed. No, I'm talking about a reasonable, intelligent, well-considered opinion on whether or not you should continue with a project.
That can be especially hard when it's a full length novel that you've polished to a blinding shine. I think that's the fear of many a writer, that you get to that point of I AM DONE only to realize that while YOU may be done, the story is not. And that you may not have the ability at the moment to improve it to where it needs to be to be truly saleable.
I remember reading an article by Orson Scott Card years ago. This is after he'd won multiple awards and accolades and was a full time writer, making his living from his books. In this article he talked about how there was a story that he wanted so much to write, but didn't think he was capable of doing the story justice. So he put the half done story away for YEARS, until he'd learned enough about himself and people and life and everything else he needed to put into that story. And then he wrote it. And he saw where things had gone wrong before where he'd never been able to pinpoint it the first time.
I hope I don't have to do that. I don't have time, for one thing. But for another, it's a short story. It's a different art form than a novel, but by the nature of it's "shortness" it can be easier to edit and keep control of the story arc.
So wish me luck. I'm diving back into the trenches, and I'd better be dragging a full-fledged story out with me on the other side.