We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.
Literature is strewn with the wreckage of those who have minded beyond reason the opinion of others.
I’m out there to clean the plate. Once they’ve read what I’ve written on a subject, I want them to think, ‘That’s it!’ I think the highest aspiration people in our trade can have is that once they’ve written a story, nobody will ever try it again.
When your story is ready for rewrite, cut it to the bone. Get rid of every ounce of excess fat. This is going to hurt; revising a story down to the bare essentials is always a little like murdering children, but it must be done.
A few days ago a customer came into our store with a Nook Color device. It had died on her after around three years of use. I asked her how many books she had on it. “57,” she said.
57? I thought. In three years?
She bought a new Nook.
Consider this: between the two readers she spent around $526.00 (and that’s without buying the 57 e-books), she could have bought 57 books for less than she paid for both e-readers. Hmm …
The road to hell is paved with works-in-progress.