Am I the only author who is reluctant to finish a book? In Stephen Sondheim’s depiction of Georges Seurat in Sunday in the Park with George, his song, Finishing the Hat, eloquently and poignantly describes this exact chiaroscuro-type emotional state.
We artists, writers, creators enter and create “the world of the hat” “where there never was a hat” and then have to leave it (temporarily, and then, forever, in the case of a series of novels or works). I feel both proud and sad, both happy and relieved, both excited and frightened to go forward.
Going forward: beta readers, feedback, critiques, discussions, defenses, relinquishments. Then, editing, revising, altering my “hat” into its final formatted form for ebook publication on Smashwords. Next, reviews, rankings, more feedback, more critiques. Finally, publication/release. Endless marketing and attempts to increase readership/visibility, all along.
Writing is the best part. I hate to end it.
I am dragging my literary feet; I have had an unfinished near-the-end chapter of This Changes My Family and My Life Forever, Volume II of The Spanners Series, for two weeks. Well, I was away and “couldn’t write” for a week (really?). Home for two days and still couldn’t make myself finish it.
Until a few hours after I drafted this post, yesterday afternoon: finished and sent off my draft to two beta readers.
Writing this post helped make the finishing occur, somehow. I explained and confessed my hesitation to complete my work. Then, I had no more excuses or barriers.
The hat must be finished.
I am already thinking frequently about Volume III (the next hat), This Is/Is Not the Way I Thought Things Would Change.