I have this feeling that all artists ask themselves this question at one point or another. When is your manuscript your art, your voice ready to be heard? I suspect it comes from the self-doubt that seems to be born and bred into all creative minds. This question has been nagging at me a lot lately as I am coming ever closer to publishing my first novel.
I have come to my own answer to that question. It is right when you feel it is right. If you still struggle with self-doubt, ask yourself this question, whose approval do you need before your work is “ready?” The subjective opinions of your peers or your audience? And it is all subjective. There is a certain craft that goes with any art endeavor, but even that can be somewhat subjective. And your audience will never see your work unless you allow yourself to be open to their criticism AND approval. I’m afraid in this business you can’t have one without the other.
I will admit that I was still on the fence until I recently received positive feedback from my writing peers, but at the same time I was receiving feedback which forced me to change things. Both types of feedback helped me to improve my work and get to the point I am at now. The point where I am ready to finish this manuscript and move on to the next, because I have a story to tell.
I am now 2/3rds done with final edits on Fae Hunter. Then it is off to beta readers. Afterwards I suspect there will be more edits, but I am getting so close!
When do you think you will be ready? What is your plan to get off the fence?