It's hard to say goodbye to an old friend. You've been through so much together, after all.
Remember that time when you were so tired you couldn't even think about eating, yet somehow your best friend, Story, kept you up half the night anyway? Then there was the time you were so sad that somehow even the birds outside had gotten the message and gone silent. There was Story, offering you an escape that would eventually bring a smile back to your face and a little confidence back to your step.
Things haven't always been great between the two of you. Like all dynamic relationships, you've had rough patches too. You've given each other the silent treatment over minor quibbles in plot and character development. You haven't always had time for one another, going long stretches without any real progress. Still, at the end of the day you've always had each other.
Sadly, for everything there is a season and it seems that Story is not doing so well. She doesn't respond to your calls. She refuses to change no matter how much time and effort you put into the relationship. Worst of all, it seems that the energy that once ignited the spark between you has gone away leaving a canvas devoid of anything but a flashing cursor. It's the writing equivalent of a flatline.
Maybe it's time to part ways with Story. Set her free, and maybe she'll come back to you. Right?
I've been slogging through my WIP edits for what seems like forever now. Like most writers, I have good days and bad days. There are times that I get very excited about the possibilities of my story, and other times that I just want to do bad things to it. Very. Bad. Things. In truth, most days I really hate that story. It sucks my creative energy while I'd rather be working on other projects. It's a dangling ball of FAIL in my everyday life. Still, I feel like I've invested too much to let it go.
BTW, it has gone through umpteen critiques, etc. so it isn't for lack of outside perspective that I'm stymied.
I've been planning on doing a post on this for a few days, but hadn't really come up with any real answers. Maybe there is a point you should give up on your story and move on? Maybe you should NEVER GIVE UP! (It is Pearl Harbor Day, after all.) I've seen both types of advice from writers and agents of all kinds.
Well, sometimes when you ask you receive. Super Lit Agent Rachelle Gardner had an awesome post on just this very topic today! I read it. It hit home to the point that I thought I had to share it with the rest of you. The subject of her post is what to do when you hate your book, and her advice is simple: It's normal, just keep going. Here's the link. I'm taping it to the wall above my writing desk.
So what say you, readers great and small? Have you ever hated a story? Have you ever given up on a story? Good results? Bad results?