The One

I've discovered a dangerous flaw in my beliefs.

I believed that Those Who Trespass was the one.

Don't get me wrong, I still think it's the best thing I've ever written. I still think it has a lot of potential. It still makes me proud. I still think it's the best chance I've had so far at getting an agent and being published.

At first glance, believing that TWT was the one doesn't seem like a bad thing. It inspires confidence, which is vital. It makes all the rewrites, all the editing hours, worth it. It gives you hope. Nothing wrong with that, right?

The problem with believing that a book is the one is because, eventually, you're going to have to write another book. And that belief about the one being the one is going to get you into trouble. Because a belief that was nothing but encouraging when you were working on the one becomes a hindrance when you're working on another book.

If Those Who Trespass is the one, then it stands to reason that any future book I write will not be the one.

And I don't like that. I want to keep getting better and better. I don't want to ever peak. And when I believe that Those Who Trespass is the one, I set myself up to peak. And the only way to go once you've peaked is down.

I'm not ready to peak yet! I don't even have a book published.

So I'm not looking at TWT as the one anymore. Every time I think that thought, I'm going to banish it. Because while Those Who Trespass is the best thing so far, it is not the one. For me, no book will ever be the one. Because once I believe that about a book...I believe I can do no better.

And I always want better to be possible.


Shelley Sly said...

Great topic. Something I've been thinking about, too. My thoughts?

Having read TWT, it is a phenomenal book, so I can see why it feels like "the one". I think that you can still write an incredible novel without having peaked. I believe in TWT's ability to be published, and if it ends up being your debut, that doesn't mean your next book won't be as good. If your next book is better, it doesn't make TWT any less brilliant. Does that make sense?

Trying to figure this out for myself, too. As long as we're striving to do our very best, we can't lose.

Anonymous said...

Great way to be!! I think if we ever stop striving to write the best, we'll have definitely peaked.