The Dreaded Edits?

I think all writers come to a point in their career, at least once, but in my case several times, where they wonder: How much further can I go in my craft? Have I reached a point I can’t seem to go beyond, and if I can’t, what happens next? Do I remain at this level and hope my stories entertain anyway?

I have just completed my first round revision of His Beautiful Wench. In the original, Amelia and Emmett were a sweet couple who adored one another and had average sex. My editor, Jilly, asked that I expand the sex scenes—ten of them, oooh la la!—and draw the reader into Amelia and Emmett’s sexual world a little more. I wasn’t sure I could do that. I opened the edits and shook my head, convinced I couldn’t do any more than I’d already done. I wanted to cry. So I left the edits for a week, telling myself I couldn’t do it. Then I asked: Why can’t I? What’s stopping me doing this?

The answer is easy. Lack of self-confidence. I didn’t believe in myself enough.

So I began edits this Monday with a heavy heart, thinking I’d fail miserably. At first, I couldn’t push past the block that has been with me for a while with regard to certain aspects of my writing. But then something happened. I added to the sex scenes, and a new dimension appeared, a new side to Amelia and Emmett that wasn’t there before. They liked to play sex games now, and I just hadn’t realised that before. Over the past four days, I’ve gone back to each scene I added to and added some more, new shifts that surprised me and changed Amelia from a rather clinging female to an outright wanton wench! She now says things she would never have said before. Does things she would never have done. And wow, she’s now a 1800s woman who knows exactly what she wants in the bedroom and strives to get it.

All in all, I’m really pleased with the changes in this book. Even with the cuts I made later on in the story, I’ve written even more, taking the word count well over the original. I’m so pleased with how I learned to add more layers to my sex scenes and bring in more emotion. I’m excited now to apply this new knowledge to my future books.
Thank you, Jilly, for asking me to do this and for having faith, when I didn’t have any, that I could do it.

5 responses

  1. First of all, I LOVE the new look of your site! It is so very sexy!Congratultions on expanding yourself, and not letting yourself have limitations.My own writing limitations—a.k.a. self-confidence—goes beyond just sex scenes, but writing in general. But I DO love pushing myself and I'm really, really counting on the thing I keep hearing: that we never DO stop learning.Excellent blog!

    August 19, 2010 at 7:28 pm

  2. I think we all have tons of 'untapped things' buried deep in there somewhere. You just needed a little prod to discover them. Good for you. The blog is BEAUTIFUL. Love this template.

    August 20, 2010 at 6:30 am

  3. Hey CZ! Nope, we never stop learning, so it always make writing a non-boring career! I didn't like the blog last night but kind of like it this morning. So it can stay for a little while. Maybe until tomorrow ha!Hey Reg! I wonder how many other untapped things I have inside and when I'll get to see them, because those edits changed me, my view of myself, and I'd love another positive change to come along like that.:)

    August 20, 2010 at 8:48 am

  4. Enjoyed your blog, Natalie! Sometimes we let our insecurities and self-doubt to overwhelm us. I'm glad that you opened up, trusted your editor, and allowed your beautiful words to flow. You're a wonderful writer and love reading your stories. Hugs, my friend! 🙂

    August 20, 2010 at 11:08 pm

  5. Hiya Laura! Thanks for the kind words, love!:)

    August 21, 2010 at 11:26 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s