with fury

Self Doubt

Working through the editing process of my first book feels a bit like therapy at times. Let me give you a prime example.

My publisher likes my manuscript. She better. She’s publishing it. However, she’s been candid with me about a couple of flaws in it. Like me, she wants to make it as good as possible before we release that bad boy to the general public.

One of those flaws is this. She told me early on that there are times in the book when I explain myself too much. Instead of just saying, “[insert opinion] is true,” I prattle on for pages defending my point of view.

“It’s like you don’t know what a badass you are,” she told me. “You don’t have to do that. Just say it. Say it with confidence.”

Therein lies the rub.

Like so many writers, I have things I want to say, but I also wrestle with self-doubt. However, as the wise Sylvia Plath (and my brilliant publisher) pointed out, self-doubt will kill an otherwise good book. It doesn’t matter if it’s fact or fiction. Leave the reader feeling like you finish every sentence with a question mark and you’ve undermined yourself.

Maybe, like me, you don’t want to come off as an arrogant asshole. I get that. It doesn’t matter.

When you write, bring it. Bring it with fury.

Yes, I know that sounds like a line from a coming of age movie about cheerleading. Whatever. They’re still words to live by.

There’s no place in writing for an apologetic approach. If you have a story to tell, fucking tell it. Leave the apologies to those who doubted you had that kind of courage in you.


About Ash Martin
Ash Martin writes dark fantasy and horror, has a thing for classic monster legends, Nordic mythology, coffee, and sarcasm, and is currently working on multiple books.

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