Utah’s chapter of Romance Writers of America just completed their first round of judging. The results are out. And this writer choked on her scores. The usual feelings flowed through; despair, depression, questioning my ability as a writer and then anger. Yes anger. Come on, every person who gets bad scores gets angry. We decide that person shouldn’t be a judge. We think, what does she know anyway? We decide to ignore every suggestion they’ve put on it. Yeah I did.
Then, we set it aside. No? Well, we should. A few days later, look at them again. The despair has quieted, the depression is gone and so you should re-evaluate your entry. Read through what the judge said. Does that sentence sound rather blah? No action words, huh? Well then, pull those passive puppies out. Read you entry out loud. Where you cringe, fix it. Because, you can bet that’s what your judge did. Cringe, not fix it…that’s your job. We edit because there is always room for improvement, so look at it again and again. Maybe what they’ve said does make a little more sense, right?
Now for the hardest word that our results bring… Humbling. Yep, I entered this contest fully expecting to final. We all do or we wouldn’t enter. Then, there could be an exception to the rule; knowing when entry is not ‘ready’ and I knew it but, I got what I paid for…a critique. Which is why I enter in the first place – the critique, the validation that, “yeah, I can tell a story.”
So, today I am going to Shake It Off, Learn From Their Suggestions, and then…Write! Right?
ROW80 check in:
I’ve put my ‘depression’ aside and will be blogging and writing up to 1,000 words a day until I change my goals again :). I think we’ve noticed that I do it every week. shhhh- dang writer, make up your mind.