Running Before I Could Walk

When my son was almost ten months old he thought he could walk. Full of confidence, he would launch himself from coffee tables and couches with wild abandon.

Ditto for my writing. Last year I launched a manuscript into the world that wasn’t quite ready. Full of confidence and euphoria, I committed a newbie error by not putting it aside to mellow. I was running before I had learnt to walk.

If I had been less impulsive, that first rejection would have taken longer. I could have spent years trying to get things right, potentially allowing a fear of rejection to take hold. My impulsivity taught me that I can handle rejection. It made me curious and keen to improve. It didn’t deter me.

So, what now?

During NaNoWriMo last year I wrote a 57,854 word manuscript and I’m now weaving it into the earlier manuscript as a sub-plot. It’s quite a tricky thing – the structural edit beast. But I’m determined.

My son was determined to walk. He soon learnt that there were better methods than launching himself from furniture to reach his goal. The methods that are proving the most successful for reaching my goal are accountability based. These include:

  • Sharing weekly writing goals with a Facebook accountability group. Anyone can start one. Consider giving it a go!
  • Writing about my progress in this Words From The Avenue series.
  • Committing to a fortnightly evening of distraction-free writing time at Write Nights, Centre for Stories in Northbridge, Perth. It’s a welcoming group, facilitated by the fabulous Emily Paull and Belinda Hermawan.

My son learning how to walk. Mission Bay, Auckland.

I’ll let you know how I go!

14 thoughts on “Running Before I Could Walk

  1. Good on you Marie. I also sent a manuscript out into the world before it was ready. Not to an agent or publisher, but a well-known author/writing coach. It really dented my confidence at the time. Now, I know it was all just part of the learning process and I’m a better writer and person for it.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Jodi! I’m glad your confidence wasn’t dented for too long. I love reading your blogs and reviews, and I would love to see you achieve your ‘publication dream’!


  2. Every time I finish writing something, I think I couldn’t possibly make it any better. I can’t see the mistakes and flaws until the cold, hard light of day, which usually comes a few months later.
    It’s great that you already see good things coming from putting your manuscript out there, and as Rae says above, I applaud you for having the courage to do it. Well done! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Its awesome to hear that all of us do things a little earlier than we should. I love hearing how you are going with your edit as I am not quite at that part with mine. Its great to have people like minded to bounce ideas and thought off of. Keep going with your manuscript and I am sure when the hurdles are jumped and the polishing is done, the right publisher will take your manuscript and say, “Marie we want your manuscript.” until that day keep writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Hayley. I’m enjoying following your manuscript journey too. I hope you manage to complete your first draft before your trip so that you can let it mellow a little longer than I did!


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