I have been going back and rereading some of my older, unpublished pieces. Most recently, I have been rereading the Black Thumb Society and The Innocence of Death. I am, frankly, surprised at how much I am enjoying reading the older pieces. Neither of these is more than a year or so old and I haven’t really done anything with them since I wrote the first draft. But I go back and read the pieces and realise that, you know what, these are good. My confidence as a writer is assuaged.
Sometimes when writing, it is really difficult to see the big picture of your book. You are working on small scenes and rarely do you have enough distance from the story to be able to recognise it as a whole. It is very much about the details as opposed to the picture as a whole concept, and that can be misleading. I have had plenty of novels where I really didslike it while writing, thinking that it feels too simple, too childish, too boring, too whatever. But once I get some distance, once I take the time away to think about other things and clear my brain of all those thoughts, often I am surprised by the result.
I am not going to be falsely modest. I am a good writer. I know I am a good writer. I am not a great writer, but I am good. I have been practising my craft for years, continuously refining it. I read and think about stories almost constantly, gathering the pieces that are useful and seeing if I can apply it to my work. I go back and refine older pieces, making the stories more of what they have the potential to be. I like being ale to say, though, that I enjoyed rereading my stories. Because if I like them, chances are other people will, too.
A rambling post, today, but I think it needed to be said. Sometimes the distance between myself and my writing is a helpful thing. It allows me to see what mistakes can be fixed, but also to get a better perspective on my writing. And my writing is good.