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A Writer's Life

April 1, 2013

Since this blog is about this writer’s life, a really important question I face is when is a book finished?

For me, the short answer is never. And I’m sure if you asked a painter or sculptor the same question you’d get the same answer.

Even now when I read my earlier books – award winners all - I come across something that makes me wince because I know I could have – should have - written that sentence, that paragraph, that description better.

When you boil it all down, the secret of writing is in the editing. And I edit all the time. My process is simple. My goal is a thousand words a day. Every morning I read those thousand words, and the editing begins. When I’m “finished” I write another thousand words, and the process is repeated. FAMILY MATTERS, my first book, took three and a half months to write. My last book, BLACK ANGEL, due to be published later this month, took nine months to write. Why the difference? Simple. I’ve gotten into the habit of randomly re-reading something I’ve written weeks ago, but this time with a much fresher eye. And realize that it could be better. So, it ‘s back to work. And all this before my editor has a chance to weigh in.

No, there’s no such thing as a perfect work. But the joy comes from getting as close as possible.
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