Heinlein’s 4th rule states that “you must put it on the market” and that is something that I haven’t always done. I have been writing for publication for more than ten years now and have only published about 50% of what I started writing.
Some of those projects are lost forever, started in some random notebook when I thought writing longhand would solve all my problems. I can’t do anything about those. Others were written on a computer but abandoned halfway through a first draft, they will be tricky, but not impossible, to get back into.
I can do something about the rest though and I spent a pleasant half hour this morning trawling through Dropbox and downloading stories that I never got around to publishing.
They range from short stories to trilogies across multiple genres. One series I got as far as having covers made, but never quite got around to publishing. That one didn’t get published because I came up with a new plan for the series and they weren’t compatible. I nevere got around to writing that series, so now I can publish what I originally wrote.
I am trying to get better about finishing what I start. In the middle of the process, when the excitement of starting something new has worn out, it is easy to convince myself that a project isn’t going anywhere, or that it’s no good. The thing is that I know that is the worst time to actually judge a story. And even when it’s done, I don’t think writers can really judge the quality of their own work.
There are some new projects on my list that I’m really excited about. Maybe I will even get around to continuing the series that almost, but never quite, made it to publication. Either way, I am excited for people to finally read them.