Is The Story Ever Really Finished?

Last year, I finished my 12000 word “novella”. It was supposed to be part of National Novel Writing Month, but I didn’t quite reach the minimum they had if you recall last year’s post about it. (See here for a refresher: I realized that I happened to finish the story I wanted in much shorter words than I was supposed to. To add things would’ve fluffed up my story in a way that would upset me.

Shortly after, I decided that the story was 100% done. I announced that my hard work was completed and the encouragement I received was awesome. I intended shortly after to put it up for sale on the Kindle, but it never seemed good enough. I sent the story to a few trusted people and got lost. Between a pregnancy made me too tired to work on more editing at first, then just made it too uncomfortable to sit down and fix it at the end, it seemed like it would never get done.

Now I wonder if I stalled it. Maybe I was just too scared of critics and reviews and anything negative that could possibly deter my dream of finally just publishing this. The story has a bit of “fart” humor to it, and it’s not always appreciated. Maybe people would think I put too many sarcastic lines or too many lines that might insult or gross out and think people would think it was unnecessarily overdone. It’s always fear of criticism of others that holds us back.

I constantly reread it. I’m at a point where I couldn’t even fix grammar problems because I’m “too close” to this project. It seems like an extreme form of procrastination that it took a whole year to feel like it’s really ready for the public. So ideally within the next week or 2, I will just close my eyes and upload it and hope for the best. Even 20 sales will exceed my expectations and be encouraging. And if I do get too caught up in how long it took to get to the publishing point, at least I can look at George RR Martin. One year for a 12000 story seems equivalent to how long we’ve waited for A Dance With Dragons. Let’s hope I build up the courage to do this.

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