03 July 2012

perfection

I've been writing and rewriting a story for several weeks now. And I keep begging my critique partners to take "just one more look" at it. Frankly, at this point, I'm surprised they haven't shot me, or pushed me into one of the wildfires. I'm dragging my feet about submitting it to the market I wrote it for because I know the editor won't change it. It has to be perfect when I send it in or she won't buy it. :(

But you are in luck. We, the editors of Electric Spec, do work with authors to make stories the best they can be. They don't have to be 100% perfect when you send them in. That should be a bit of a relief for you all. What's the most common thing we do? Besides spelling and grammar issues, we often end up shortening a story. Short stories, in particular, need to be as short as possible to tell the story. :) Yeah, I know, easier said than done.

Speaking of perfection, the awesome writer and writing teacher Kristine Kathryn Rusch, has a really nice article posted on her website: The Business Rusch: Perfection. Ms. Rusch basically says no story is ever perfect to every reader. So, at some point, quit sweating it and send it in! Good advice.
By the way, Ms. Rusch is an excellent resource for writers. Check out her archive of 'On Writing' posts.

Oh, and FYI, we close to submissions for the August 2012 issue on midnight July 15, 2012 (U.S. Mountain Daylight Time). So you still have time to send your story in. :) Good luck.

28 comments:

Deb Smythe said...

Thanks for the K. Rusch link, Leslie. I'm going to bookmark it and use it as an antidepressant when needed and as a pointed reminder when critiquing.

lesleylsmith said...

Yeah, Deb! :)

RenataH said...

Yes, perfection is a demon I struggle with too. In the end, I've learned that if I like it and it's my best effort for that time and place, then it's finished. To paraphrase you, Lesley, one can't please everyone else all the time. A really smart writing group helped me figure that out. ;)

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