Saturday, August 29, 2015

When It's Time to Let Your Novel Fly the "Nest"

Writing a novel is a little bit like raising a teenager. Or, so I assume. I haven't yet had the pleasure of raising a teenager. But, from what I gather, they're pretty much the same thing.

Pretty much.

Every parent gets to a point where it's time to take a deep breath, drop your kid of somewhere far from home, and pay someone else a buttload of money to turn them into a respectable member of society. To me, that's bares a terrifying similarity to the author/novel relationship. It's where I find myself right now, in fact.

Think about it. You've coddled and cooed to your "work-in-progress" for so long now that people have started staring at you in the self-checkout line at Stop & Shop. Sometimes, you let others look at your novel (kid) and half-heartedly listen to their concerns and thoughts on possible improvement. Maybe you've even bragged about your book (kid) on social media so much so that your closest family and friends have blocked you. No one wants to see pictures of your kid anymore... or hear about the novel you've been working on for the better part of the last few years. It's time to let go.

You've done enough.

Whatever will be, will be... right? At some point, you just can't edit anymore. You can't show it to anymore betas. You just need to open up the front door and say, "We need your room for our new craft-space/Ebay-room. So, get out."

While I'm not 100% there just yet (and who ever really is), I think I'm super close. I've nurtured this thing and pushed it along the best I know how. It's time to put it in someone else's hands and see what comes back. Sure, on some cold winter nights, I'll be sitting at home wondering what kind of shenanigans my novel is getting into. I'll be worried that it will connect with the wrong crowd and come back home to me unrecognizable and a total waste of my time and money.

God, that sounds awful. That's not going to happen, right?


Ah, well. The point is, sometimes it is just freaking time. Enough is enough.



  1. Fly, little novel, fly! (or not so little, but you catch my drift)

  2. Finishing my re-writes. Looks like I'm gonna be feeling the same way once I'm done. :)

  3. I've had 6 novels published and I still feel this way, Tom. A lot that has to do with the fact I've drastically changed genres and am pretty much starting over at Step 1 again when it comes to getting a publishers. So many queries written and sent I've lost count. :( many times as the little Novel Child keeps being turned away, I keep sending it out again with a new change of underwear and cab fare. Maybe I shouldn't include the cab fare, huh?