Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Dare to Suck: Part 2

by Mary Sutton / @mary_sutton73

So, I dared to suck. I sent the story out. Yesterday, the comments from the editor came back. Guess what?

I don't suck.

I feel a CS Lewis quote coming on: Oh frabjous day, calloo, callay! Cue the fireworks!

She liked the character. She liked the dog. She didn't even talk about my lack of intricate plot twists (it is a short story after all; how many twists can you possibly have?). She even told me that I have "no reason to be insecure about my writing," which is a huge sigh of relief for me (okay, I know, lots have people have told me this, but this is a woman I've never met, a professional, who has no reason to sugar coat it for me).

Now, this is not to say that she didn't have any comments at all. Turns out that even though I didn't think I was writing a police procedural story (I deliberately stayed away from overly technical details that I thought characterized the genre), I was. Any story told from the POV of a law enforcement officer is a police procedural. Who knew?

Fortunately, I have great timing. I'm taking an online class with Lee Lofland, former law enforcement officer, author, and blogger at The Graveyard Shift this week. So I'm going to restrain myself from jumping right back into the story, finish the class, and hopefully be able to make it better.

That's the key: make it better. It's good now. It can be better. None of the editor's comments were unfixable. She didn't tell me, "Don't give up your day job, sweetie."

It's true. Great things happen when you show up. When you dare to suck. Because sometimes, you don't suck.

I suddenly feel the urge to "futterwhacken."


  1. Of course you don't. But writers are inherently insecure, it's part of the charm. If you thought you were really good, that's when you have a problem. :)

    1. This is true. But tech writing aside, I'd never let a "professional" anything read my writing, so I was terribly anxious on this one.

      But yes, if I thought I was the next Dame Agatha, that's be a problem!