I’ve been reading a lot lately. Except not for fun. I’ve been reading the works in progress I have been piling up and begging to be finished, if only to give my poor brain some closure. I’ve been reading everything started but not yet finished so I can figure out how to finish them.

This is what I’ve been working on this year. I’m great at coming up with ideas, inventing characters, turning a phrase. I’m getting better at finishing what I start. Where I really suck, though, is writing the bad first draft and then turning it into the great final draft.

I’m lucky in that I can read my own writing and enjoy it. Not on the same level as I enjoy someone else’s, but if it’s been long enough, I can read one of my stories and think, hey, that’s good. Did I write that sentence? That’s a pretty good sentence.

But I’m also an editor, and when I find a mistake (which I always always do), I’m also the one who has to fix it. There’s no one else at the end of this book. There’s just me, and if it doesn’t make sense, I need to do something about it.

These kinds of problems always happen when I start writing one kind of story, but it turns into something else by the last sentence. It’s not so easy to fix in post. It’s really fucking hard. But that’s where a writer proves themselves for real.

It’s not just putting words in the right order. You have to put the paragraphs in the right order, too, or nothing makes sense.