Don’t read my book!

Yes, you heard me. I don’t want anyone reading ย the book I worked so hard to write. Not indefinitely, of course, but at least until I correct my horrendous writing mistakes. There are two reasons I avoid reading my books after I’ve published them: ย 1) I don’t want to find that I’ve missed some awful typos (like writing “nut” instead of “but), and 2) I don’t want to see how bad my writing is.

Sigh.

When they tell you that a writer is their own worst critic, they are definitely not joking. Seeing the words I wrote nearly three years ago makes me cringe. Heck, seeing the words I wrote five months ago makes me cringe. On one hand, that’s a good thing because it means I’m improving and my writing is becoming better and better, but on the other, it means I don’t like anything I published in the past. I’m almost embarrassed by it. I look at my words and think, “Oh my god people will judge me as a writer based upon this.” Of course I’m forever grateful for the people who praised my book when it made me so insecure, but now I almost feel bad for not giving them the best possible product.

I’m not going to take Puppet Paradeย down. But I am definitely going to goย overย it with a fine-toothed comb. Not too fine a comb, though, because I don’t want to cheat the people who’ve already bought it, but the second edition of this book will hopefully have less mistakes and better writing, and I won’t change anything in the plot. I will be publishing through Lightning Source, probably – it’s a book distributor I recently found who offers much better options for indie writers, and I will be sure to blog about it soon enough, because I know my fellow indies are always looking for something better.

I know several of my followers have obtained copies of my book one way or the other. To those who read them and gave me their honest, favourable opinions – thank you so much. To those who haven’t yet, I ask you not to read it. Of course, you are free to do so, but I would rather you read the better version. Once I have the revised edition I will make it available for free to all my followers for a definite period of time, so you’ll all be able to pick up copies then. Hopefully soon. =]

How do you feel about reading your past work? Have you ever taken down something you’ve published and taken it apart because you thought it was cringe-worthy?

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21 thoughts on “Don’t read my book!

  1. I haven’t read it yet, but it’s on my Kindle. I’ll wait until you have the free version of the updated book ready, and I’ll download that one instead. We are definitely our own worst critics, that’s for sure. I probably wouldn’t notice the things you noticed and want to change, but I understand why you want to. I’d feel the same way, I’m sure. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Been there, done that. I wrote a book two years ago and I look at it now and cringe a little because of the grammar. I love the story and had a blast being a part of it, but when you typo a guy’s name? That’s embarrassing.

  3. It’s on my iPad but I haven’t had a chance to read it yet (so many books, so little time, sigh!). I’ll wait for Puppet Parade 2.0 then!

    We are our own worse critics, it’s so true. I certainly need some time to pass before reading anything I’ve written. If enough time has passed, then I forget what I’ve written and I can almost read it like a stranger would and be much kinder on myself. So weird.

    • Yes please! I would like it if you were to read the better version. ๐Ÿ™‚

      You know, I thought the same thing when I dared to peek at Puppet Parade. It didn’t work. If anything, I was much harsher on myself. =[

  4. Nina Kaytel says:

    I feel the same about the Alundra File. I want to take it down and bury my head in the sand, but if I do what have I learned. If I do, how can I be a better writer?

  5. When I read my past work I find it interesting to see how much I’ve improved and to see how I used to write. But sometimes I do cringe. And I’m still cringing at my current works.

  6. I don’t think I’ve ever taken anything down, per se; I did have to order a second proof draft from CreateSpace, when I realized that in the first one I had, I had the wrong name for my heroine on the back of the book. Oops. At any rate, I generally avoid rereading my own stuff, exactly because I worry that I’ll find horrible typos when I do.

    • Why is it always the name of the protagonist? Even now when I’m editing the book, I ended up mixing the name of my heroine with the name of another from a completely different book.

      The typos are just the worst.

  7. krissnp says:

    My own work is the best work I read. Though I revise it some time. A few mistakes are likely. But the larger picture the story presents is always dear to me. A reader is free to dislike it.

    • Good point! And oh I’m quite proud of that fact, but the cringe-worthiness is a difficult factor to look fast! Already 20% through the editing process and I’m pleased to say that it’s looking much better now! =]

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