Here's a confession: when I worked in author relations at a publishing house, I would sometimes talk to an acquisitions editor/director and pull out a manuscript from their slush pile to do a random reading. Most of the time--I think pretty much every time--the reading came out comical. If you pick out a few paragraphs to read of many works, they don't sound very interesting and insightful. They usually sound corny. Especially if they're manuscripts hoping to find their way to publication.
This wasn't a particularly nice thing to do--I'll admit it. But it's something that I want to suggest that you do for your own work.
I do this all the time.
I'll take a random page of the project I'm working on and just start reading.
Sometimes the stuff I'm reading seems brutal, boring, completely worthy of the trashbin. Sometimes, however, I actually like what I'm reading.
This helps to get some type of perspective. As an author, you'll never quite have the full perspective on your work simply because it's your work. But still, when you take something out of context, then you can sometimes see it for what it's worth.
Sometimes, it's not worth much.
Sometimes you'll be surprised.
Labels: tips, writing