That stupid restless leg syndrome I have going on kept me up into the wee hours last night. I passed time by stretching in front of the tube and watching Hell's Kitchen (gotta love TiVo). This one exchange between Gordon Ramsey (a man whose restaurants have won TWELVE Michelin Stars) and a contestant:
Gordon: Those potatoes are raw. Why do I bother? You don't even care!
Girl: How can you say that? I care!.
Gordon: I know you don't care because you don't question yourself.
She doesn't care because she doesn't bother to question her work?She knows how to cook potatoes. She's likely done it a ka-zillion times. She is talented and good at her craft.
She assumes she knows more than she does and isn't being thoughtful about her end product.
As I am preparing to go into edits on my next novel (Skies Like These - slated for Spring 2014 - woot! woot!), these words shook me..
I grabbed the TiVo remote and rewound the exchange.
So often I have met writers who want to succeed but who are not willing to question (or have anyone else question) their work. They ignore critique. They fold under any suggestion of change. They are so certain they are doing it right, that they plow ahead and think all those people who are gently suggesting a course correction are off the mark..
I can also fall into this mire at times - but, if I am to consider this writing thing as a profession (and I truly do) then I must be cognisant and do all I can to avoid it. I must open my mind and be a fair critic of my own work. I must consider my editor's input and be willing to be thoughtful and mindful of each choice I make in my manuscript.