Jeff O'Handley, Author

Jeff O'Handley

The Doubting Writer Finds His Voice

Kick Back Time

The desire to get away can be a powerful motivator.

I’ve seen a few of you in recent weeks report on making a big push to finish up a project so you could  go on vacation with a clean slate. I wasn’t aware I was doing that until mid-week,  but that must have been what was behind my burst of activity.

I approached this part of the process with Barton’s Women a little differently than I did with Parallel Lives. With PL, when I definitively hit ‘The End’, I printed it out and put it away for five or six weeks. With Barton’s Women, for some reason I decided to do things differently. I powered through the end a few weeks back, then just went back to the beginning and started going over it again. I’m not sure why I did it this way, except that it felt like the right way to go about it, and as a writer, I’m all about feel and intuition.

It’s not done, but yesterday I reached the end of the work for the second time, turned my rough draft into something a little more polished, and now it’s banished, for a little while, anyway. I made some mistakes, for sure, I’m going to need to pay particular attention to the last ten pages or so when I do come back to this project in a few weeks, because I definitely think I let me desire to get it done interfere with my judgment a little bit, but I feel pretty good about it overall.

And now I take a  break. The beach is calling. Have a great weekend, all.

7 Responses

  1. I think it's definitely a good thing to follow your gut feeling as a writer, but banishing Barton's Women for a little while will also do the manuscript some good when you come and look at it again with fresh eyes.

    Have an awesome time at the beach!

    – From your jealous and currently freezing friend from down in Australia, where it is currently winter…

  2. Hey, congratulations on getting through your manuscript a second time! That's great! Enjoy the beach. 🙂

  3. Thanks, everyone. Indeed, we had a great time. It was a wonderful feeling to be back in the ocean again. I miss it.

  4. You know, I always forget two things about Australia: first, that the seasons run opposite from the states, and second, that it's not all a lush, tropical paradise. 'Freezing' and 'Australia' just don't go together in my mind, though it's a big place with a lot of diversity. Cheer up! Soon, things will be reversed!

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