Wednesday, 27 January 2010

When to Stop

Editing that is, not writing in general

But when do you decide to stop tweaking and changing things as sit back and say to yourself ‘enough’s enough, time for this baby to venture out into the big bad world.’?

I seem to have done nothing but edit, and rewrite, and edit and rewrite for the past few months, and I’ve reached the stage where every time I look at it I see a word I want to tweak, or replace with a stronger one, or change the emphasis in some small way.

I could go on like this for ages.

I’ve set it aside, come back to it with fresh eyes and set it aside again.

Have I addressed all the issues the agent raised? Have I done a good enough job? Is this something he can sell? I could stare at it and ask myself these questions for months to come.

No. The time has come. Time to stop tweaking and putting things off. Time to get it back out there.

Maybe this version will be good enough to attract the attention of an agent, maybe not. But there’s only one way to find out.


  1. There comes a time when you have to let it go. If it comes back with suggestions, so much the better, right? But it's kind of weird about writers--we either let it out too soon before it's polished or hang on too long and never finish or let go. Sounds like you're of that group. I'm from the first group--overzealous.

  2. Say Kate, do you happen to know what the matter is with Litopia...?

  3. Hi Karen, so very true :-)

    And Pelotard and any other Litopians stopping by - Litopia has been hacked. There are updates on a special Litopia google groups that you can find here:

    Lets hope Peter manages to get things sorted soon :-)

  4. I'm a serial tweaker! I find it so hard to let go too - it's a noghtmare. It never seems good enough, but you're right there does come a time when you have to let it go!

    Good luck

    Julie xx

  5. Good luck with it! I'm sure it's fabulous.

    Cat x

  6. Thanks guys for all your encouragement :-)


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