A new friend (I'd like to think she's a friend) asked me on Twitter about how I manage to keep editing. If you're a writer, you know that editing is not fun. Writing is fun. Writing is creating new life, new stories, new conflicts, but editing is just facing your own limitations. So, in answer to her question, I said this.
When editing gets boring, tough, or just a chore, I think about the life I want as a published author. I think about the accomplishment of getting an agent and a publisher to acknowledge my work and put it out there. I think of the satisfaction of knowing a reader picked up my book, sat down, and couldn't put it back down. All of that is impossible unless I actually finish the editing. So, I will edit and I will cut. I will scrap chapters that are slowing the plot. I will reword paragraphs that are unclear. I will listen and absorb anything my beta readers have to tell me, regardless of how hard it may be to hear. I will do all those things because if I don't, the life I want will never be a reality.
So that's my motivation. I have a lot more behind me, pushing me to finish this book, but when it comes down to editing, this is where my mind is. I have dreamed of being a published author since I could write. I remember looking at the first book my mother bound for me of my grade school labors. I remember watching the reaction of my high school friends as they raved about my (in hindsight, subpar) works of fiction. Now, with a real story, a real completed novel, and a real chance, I am only looking forward.
Be Excellent to Each Other.
Keep your eyes open for my debut novel, The Paladin.