Speed, quality, and doing the hard work

Last night I edited both my novel and a My Way or the Anime post, and I was struck by the differences between the two.

Editing a blog post is easy. With a deadline close at hand, the incentives to stop screwing around and finish are high. The ephemeral nature of the format also means less editing is required. If I phrase something awkwardly in a blog post, that’s okay – there’ll be another one next week. The emphasis is on putting the work out there NOW. The fiddly bits aren’t as important.

Editing a novel, on the other hand, is very difficult. As an enduring work, any mistakes I make are harder to change; sure, I can edit the ebook version, but what if I ever print dead tree versions? Mistakes might as well be written in stone once they’re printed in a thousand books. Best to get it right the first time.

Motivation too, is harder to come by. It’s easy to edit a 1,000 word blog post, but a 150,000 word novel? That’s so daunting it makes it difficult to get started every single day.

Here’s the trick: though the blog post is easier, the novel is more important. Every blog post I ever write will disappear into obscurity, and fast, but a book? A unique story brought to life that could only come from my mind?

It’s hard, but it’s worth doing. The hard work usually is.

3 thoughts on “Speed, quality, and doing the hard work

  1. Good to see you chasing your dreams, Stilts! The stuff you wrote in your Sakurasou posts was very motivational, and to see you actually living that dream in such a public way (through a blog) is heart-warming- takes a lot of guts to do that. I can’t wait to see the actual novel! And I’m wondering what genre it is- fantasy? Sci-fi? Drama-Fiction? Thriller-ala Da Vinci code? Don’t have to answer that one if it’s TMI…XP But I’m thrilled by what you’re doing and wish you the best of luck…;)

    Mistakes might as well be written in stone once they’re printed in a thousand of books.

    I hear that old unedited editions of books with mistakes are rare collector’s items in many cases…XP

    It’s hard, but it’s worth doing. The hard work usually is.

    For the sake of the attaining the dream behind all the hard work, no price is too high…;)

    • Thank you, Zen. I’m happy to have commenting over here as well : )

      As for the genre of my novel, it’s fantasy, though I spend a great deal of effort to make everything logical and straightforward ala Fullmetal Alchemist or any Magic A is Magic A story. I may love fantasy, but I don’t like to cut corners myself. Well, usually.

      As for the rest, I’ll keep the details to myself until my editors eviscerate the next draft, or at least wait and dole out hints over time ; )

  2. Congrats on your new blog, Stilts nii nii! Keep up the good work, my finger’s always just one click away from pre-ordering your novel 😉

Comments are closed.