My sister recently started reading my current work in progress. The one that I started revising with great enthusiasm. Her opinion, so far, is that I need to just cut the first several chapters because they are pretty boring and don't really draw anyone into the story. She's right. I hate that. (She's my little sister and has no right to be right. That's my job.)
I'm realizing that it's hard to ignore criticism. It feels so personal, like they are seeing something terrible in me as a person, not my writing. It almost makes me think I'm not cut out to be a writer. And then, I let it sit for a while. And I lose the groove I was in. I haven't actually done anything with my rewrites since she talked to me.
The good news is I still love what I'm doing. And she was right. The bad news is that all the time I put into the first several chapters (which didn't change noticeably in excitement levels) is pretty much down the drain. I'll be scrapping those chapters, or maybe inserting them somewhere else in the story (in a heavily edited version since they won't fit the way they are now.)
It's hard to be at the beginning of this whole writer thing. I haven't learned to be thick-skinned or to be really consistent, even when I don't want to be writing. I'm pretty sure it's a normal thing to go through, but still. It's just one more part of the process that I hadn't been expecting.
So, I'm starting over again. Day one, rewrites. My goal for today is to figure out where to start the story if I don't start it where I have been. I don't even know if I will actually get anything down on paper to fix later. I just need to know where I'm starting so that I can move forward again. (Here's hoping I get the taxes done today or tomorrow so that I can channel that energy into writing.)