After months of drafting, I’ve finally finished writing my novel! And, it’s the very best thing I’ve ever written in my entire life. Or, it’s the worst book ever typed into existence.
Which one it is, I can’t say for sure.
But, I managed to reach my 100,000-word count goal, which is a jubilant victory in itself. Each word is placed perfectly to compile a brilliant masterpiece. My novel is a celebration of complete literary genius, unlike anything the world has ever seen.
Or, equally possible: I’ve strung together a nonsensical litany of 100,000 consecutive units of pure and utter horseshit. I’ve written a turd manifesto that no being in the entire universe would ever dare to read.
Writing a novel is hard. Though, what’s harder is figuring out what the months of pouring out my heart and soul onto the page has ultimately led to: either an inspired triumph guaranteed to cement its title on the New York Times bestseller list. Or, it’s a clichéd flop that not even my parents would want on their bookshelf.
To figure out if it’s any good, I suppose I could ask for feedback. But, what if my novel is so compelling that it makes my writing group extremely jealous and—rather than futilely attempting to recreate such a masterpiece—they abandon their manuscripts and vow to never write a single sentence ever again?
Or, what if my novel disgusts them so much that they create a separate writing group where they vote to shun me? What if then they ideate and execute a campaign to ensure that I am exiled from all other writing communities, preventing me from ever speaking to any writer ever again?
Hmm… Maybe I better skip the feedback step and go straight to an agent. Yeah, that’s it! My novel is good enough, to the point where revisions aren’t needed at this point. Or ever. I struck gold on draft number one, so this novel is ready to be printed immediately!
Although, before I query it, I should probably substitute every single character with a more interesting character, swap out every conflict for a more heightened conflict, and replace every single word I’ve written with much better words. Once rewritten, I should toss my laptop from my second-story office window.
Whoa! All of a sudden, I hear this encouraging inner voice telling me to let go of all insecurities and share my most precious creation with the world. This voice says, “Take your novel directly to a publisher. Your novel is so brilliant that it needs to be shared with the world right now!” Therefore, if I were to send my novel to every major book publication they would make an exception to their rule forbidding unsolicited manuscript submissions and a bidding war over my novel would soon ensue.
Or, what’s more likely is that publishers will think my novel is so outrageously horrendous, they will halt operations to hold a company-wide meeting where they will decide how to get the word out that my writing is laughably piss-poor.
It’s probably for the best that I don’t share my novel with anyone ever. Not even myself. I should hire a hypnotist to put me in a trance so I forget ever having generated this stupid idea. However, if it turns out to be the best story ever penned, it would be a shame if this went to waste. I think I’ll print out a few copies just for good measure.
Okay, now that they are printed, the only logical next step is to stare at my shredder and debate over what to do with the copies. I could either make myself emotionally vulnerable by sharing the pages, or I could toss them in my shredder.
Oh, never mind! I’ve got it! I finally know what to do.
I’ll avoid my novel altogether by getting started on something new—an idea just popped into my head! I have an exciting, original premise that is so good, it’s awful.