Wednesday, September 1, 2021

The Insecure Writer and Sending Your Baby Off To The Editor


Today is September's contribution to Alex Cavanaugh's Insecure Writers Support Group.

What makes me an insecure writer this month?

The fact that I just sent my debut manuscript off to my editor.

I’ve always felt I had a pretty good handle on my manuscript, at least as far as typos and errors were concerned. I have a knack for spotting them, and considering that I’ve reread every chapter in my manuscript at least a hundred times (minimum), I assumed simple errors would have been stamped out by now. But as I read through the manuscript one last time before shipping it off to the editor, it became clear to me just how easily errors can slip through.

And that keeps me up at night.

Well, so what, you say. Who cares if a few errors slip through now? I’m still in the editing stages, and more errors will inevitably slip in later while I’m revising based on the editor’s suggestions. But what about later when all the editing is done and I’m finally ready to publish the darn thing? Will I be able to click on that "upload manuscript" button, or will I keep searching my manuscript over and over again, searching for that last elusive error?

I know that errors are inevitable, and that all books have them, but that doesn't make me feel any better.

September's question: How do you define success as a writer? Is it holding your book in your hand? Having a short story published? Making a certain amount of income from your writing?

I’ll consider myself a successful writer the instant I upload my first book to Amazon. Period. It’ll be an ebook, of course, but that’s okay by me. I’m sure I'll eventually put together a print version, if only so I can have a physical copy or two of my own to sit on my desk. 

As far as income goes, I do have  a target in mind, but whether or not I meet that goal won't determine if I'm a successful writer or not. All that will determine is whether my writing is a career, or an expensive hobby.

Take care everyone, and stay safe! 


P.S. Do any of you know any good proofreaders?