On the desktop of my computer is this picture of Neil Gaiman:
It's there because, well, Neil Gaiman. And because of that second bit. Finish Things. He's right about that, I know, but that doesn't mean it's easy to do.
Finishing things, really truly finishing them--not just abandoning them and hoping no one notices that you didn't really hone it into something beautiful as you should have--is difficult. It takes time and hard work. Deep brain and soul work.
It's not fun in the same way as starting things. After a while, you might not like what you're working on and wish you could just be done already. Even a potential masterpiece can lose its sheen for its creator when you've been staring down the barrel of it too long. But if you give up too soon, it's a near-miss. It's not what it should have been.
It's also sometimes difficult to know when you have, indeed, finished something. There is a time when your tinkering around and rearranging things is just you fussing about because you don't quite have the guts yet to send it out there into the world to be judged. You're lingering and procrastinating when the work is really already done.
I'm afraid that's where I am right now. I've got a book I first wrote as NaNoWriMo 2013…so that means I've already been working on it over a year. Moreso than other books I've written, I'm worried about getting this one right. So, I keep seeking one more beta reader, one more round of edits, one more…something. Anything that means I don't have to send her out there yet.
I'm fighting that impulse in myself by making a schedule. She's *done* as of the end of March. It will be done. It is known.
It's time to finish this, so I can move on to the other projects waiting in the wings.
How about you? How do you know when you have really finished something?
This posting is part of the Insecure Writers Support Group blog hop. To check out other posts by writers in a variety of places in their careers, check out the participant list. This group is one of the most open and supportive groups of people I have ever been associated with. You should check them out!