Caroline A Raine

Monday, April 4, 2011

Day 10 When Self Doubt Creeps In

Well today I went on line and started reading the reviews of other quarter finalists and was swiftly swept into the whirlpool of despair. Everyone else's reviews seem fantastic! Just about every other review includes a comment that the reviewer would love to see that work in print/on the bookshelves...! Oh dear.

THEN I received a decisive and honest review from a fellow quarter finalist and that didn't do much for my usual perky upbeat sense of self. She commented on my use of imagery and doesn't understand how anything could smell purple as in "and purple-scented flowers nodded and danced gently in a cool breeze". Oh well must just keep reminding myself to keep things in perspective.

ON TOP OF THAT I realise that the 11th hour edit I did before submitting to ABNA - a twizzle with the opening paragraph intended to be a stronger "hook" is actually rubbish  - and if I submitted again, I would have left it as it was originally intended. It is meant to start with ...

"The children at “Fulker’s House - Home for Abandoned or Orphaned Children” called this particular tree The Death Tree. Its dense, drooping, waxy green-blue leaves seemed to hide secrets and if you stood beneath it, you could not see the sky above".

Self Doubt Self Doubt Self Doubt - an artist's greatest enemy! 


Jeana said...

I have the self-doubt too. I'm trying to tell myself that it doesn't matter what I think now--my work has to stand on its own in this round.

I think the purple-smelling flowers works okay in that a person may have a memory of smelling a purple flower and it could conjure that up. I know a lot of people who are bothered by Marcus Zusak's language because it's different and sometimes doesn't make perfect sense, but that's what I love about his writing.

Christine Murray said...

I agree with Jeana, I think some sentences are meant to be evocative rather than being strictly correct. I actually rather like that line.

That being said, I think it's the honest comments that are worth taking on board. Let the review percolate around in your head for a few days before making a definite decision. Maybe ask some people you trust. Hopefully you will come to a decision on it that you feel is write. You are the author. You know the right thing for your book, no one else.

Caroline said...

Thanks ladies - it helps to step out of fierce mother tiger mode and stop feeling so protective of my book. Perhaps if I get on and write the next one, it will help!

GalleySlave said...

As I said on another forum - I could almost taste the purple-smelling flowers; that's what evocative writing should do. I can't wait to get my printed copies for Christmas stockings.