What possible writely punishment could I be putting myself through? I’m revising two short stories I don’t like.
I really liked the ideas of “What You Don’t See” and “Short Hallway”. However, the first draft executions of both were awful slogs that did little to capture what was in my head. Not a problem, as I tend to be hard on myself during first drafts and I feel like revising is something I’m better at.
I reread both stories last month after I finished revising Voice, thinking I’d make notes on them and get a jump start on their revisions.
Instead, I made a few notes and then put them both aside to sit for the last week of February because I had no desire to even attempt to start to revise either one of them. The first drafts are as a bad as I remember and they’re going to take a lot of work to revise and it’s going to be such a slog because I don’t like the stories. Any time I decide that I don’t like a story, it means that all future work on that story is going to be painful. I’ll be stomping my foot like a little child being forced to do something against my will, procrastinating even though I know it would be better to just get it over with. I can’t help it. On the outside I’m 36, but my Rainbow Brite shoelaces should tip you off that on the inside, I’m 5.
Why don’t I just give up on the stories if I don’t like them? Two reasons. One, I’m loathe to give up on ANY story no matter what the circumstance. Two, when I finally do quit on a story it’s because I’ve tried everything and the story just doesn’t work. I’ve completed and submitted and/or published several stories that I hated from first draft to last, but they worked. Even if I hate them, I have to honor that.
I think with the required effort, these two stories will work.
It’s just a matter of summoning up the necessary energy in order to put in the required effort to make them work.
I don’t wanna.