Recently, spurred by nostalgia brought on by my first post here last month, I revisited my first book series, The P.J. Stone Gates Trilogy.
This series brought so many amazing people into my life that I couldn’t even begin to list them all here. So I won’t for fear of leaving someone out.
I have since determined that all of those people are absolutely insane.
But hold up, I’m getting ahead of myself.
As I was saying… Nostalgia…blah, blah, blah, oh yes.
So I dusted off on old copy of the trilogy, pulling it from the back of one of my bookshelves. (Not really. I opened up the pdf file for the omnibus on my computer, but the other way sounds much more dramatic, right? Just picture me pulling out an old weathered book, blowing the dust off… *cough-cough* Wait. Dust makes me sneeze. Never mind.) So anyways… I cracked the spine open, and began to read. (Started scrolling.)
What the—??? I did NOT seriously write this clumsy prose, did I? This is…this is… Not good. (I actually strung together a sentence primarily made up of F-Bombs. It was quite prolific. My thirteen-year-old self would have been very proud.) How did people actually like this crap? I mean they did. Which brings back to the insane thing. The P.J. Stone Gates Trilogy, once upon a time (aka 2 years ago) was an Amazon bestseller. Lots of people bought it, read it…and liked it. (I’m now convinced every single one of them is utterly mad.) Ugh. The thought of anyone, let alone all those faceless people, taking in my crappy prose…AAAAAAHHHH! *bangs head against wall * *Falls to ground sobbing * On the bright side: My tears of regret will probably single-handedly end all droughts in the world. You’re welcome.
Here is a very important piece of advice for all you writers out there: Do not, whatever you do, do not go back and read your old published works. You will only cause yourself immeasurable pain and suffering in the form of self-doubt and crippling…
Oh wait! Idea!!!!
At some point amid your nervous breakdown it will hit you. If you happen to be in a position to re-do said works, that is. (If you’re not, just go back to being inconsolable. There is no help for you. So sorry.) You will then be driven by a single-minded obsession to—
Fix all the words! I must Fix. All. The. Words!!!!!!!!
New covers, new words…better. It will all be better. Just keep editing, editing, editing. Just keep editing, editing, editing. *twitch * *twitch *
And that’s where I’m at now. I have become a shell of my former writerly self. My husband doesn’t remember what I look like…my dogs pile their toys on top of me in an attempt to cure whatever’s wrong (‘cause you know, a Nyla Bone a day keeps the doctor away). I sometimes scream out about passive language in my sleep. Or about the filtering… So. Many. Filtering. Words. *pulls hair* Oh, but the words… the words are getting better. Maybe. I don’t even know any more. *twitch *twitch * I mean, what is a word? What is language? What is the meaning of friggin’ life? *twitch* *twitch *
If only I wouldn’t have read that first sentence. If only I would have just left it all alone. Just like Schrodinger’s cat, (sort of) my book would have both sucked and not sucked simultaneously, hence I could pretend it didn’t suck. I could have kept my sanity. But alas, I didn’t heed the warnings of other authors who had come before me. *more sobbing *
It’s too late for me. Save yourselves! Learn from my mistakes. Don’t read your old published books.
And puh-leeeeze, when you see my old trilogy become new again, even if it’s the most horrible thing you’ve ever laid eyes on… Just smile and tell me it’s so much better than it was before, even if you didn’t read the old version. And for the love of God, don’t you dare read the old version! I will be forced to cut you! *dances around brandishing a knife* You don’t know me! You don’t know me! I’ve been to prison! (Not really, unless you count the Alcatraz of my mind.)
Anywho… Keep a look out for the new and improved (I hope) 2nd editions of Hidden Gates, Broken Gates, and Open Gates. Eeeeep! And please, fellow authors… PUH-LEEEAZE. Heed my warning. Trust me, you do not want to go through what I did.
Until next time, D.T. Dyllin signing off.