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Am I The Only One Who Does Not Enjoy Reading My Own Work?


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Curious if others are the same.  I will write something and then read it a couple times looking for grammatical mistakes and then once I make a pass without any mistakes, I never want to read it again.

 

What's worse is that I'm forced to read my book again nearly every week as my editor makes changes that I disagree with and he usually agrees with me but sometimes we have a friendly argument.  I am so sick of reading my own work that I told Stephen, my editor, that I am not going to read the book again until he tells me that he is 100% finished with editing and about to print.

 

Also, I feel awkward asking a friend to read it because the analogy I will use is that of a guy who stinks at guitar and is always asking his friends to listen to the new song he learned.  For this reason, I just want to put the book out in the ether and see if there are others who are moved by it or if they think it is drivel, which is what I refer to my book in arguments with editor - "I hate reading this boring drivel", to which he argues with me about that too!  LOL

 

What about my fellow members of Christian Writers?  Do you enjoy reading your own work?

 

TLDR: I do not enjoy reading my own work, am I alone in this or is this normal?

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Well, I just consider it normal reading, so I don't really think of it one way or the other.  But, I'm always off to the next project, so I don't have too much time to read my old stuff.  When I do read it, though, I enjoy it.

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I love reading my own work. I put up some of my stories in the critique board. Then when people start insulting me, I learn two things, haters gonna hate, and genuine people help you out 🙂 You could try finding a new editor, but Stephen might be right 😕 too

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Could be how and when you read it. I wrote my novel because it was my kind of story and no one else has written it. Five years later, (and working on second book), I read it because it is my kind of story and the only one I can find that fits that spot. aka I read it for fun.

 

I absolutely hated it when I was into grammar editing, but that was more that I'm lousy at grammar editing, so hate it, and still had to do it.

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1 hour ago, suspensewriter said:

Well, I just consider it normal reading, so I don't really think of it one way or the other.  But, I'm always off to the next project, so I don't have too much time to read my old stuff.  When I do read it, though, I enjoy it.

Suspense, maybe that's the problem - for the most part, I do not read books and particularly not novels.  I read the bible constantly but really am not well read.  I guaranty I don't have the number of books under my belt as others on this board.  I guess it's just that I don't like reading in general.

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1 hour ago, Wesley Southern said:

I love reading my own work. I put up some of my stories in the critique board. Then when people start insulting me, I learn two things, haters gonna hate, and genuine people help you out 🙂 You could try finding a new editor, but Stephen might be right 😕 too

Wes, the internet is full of people who have miserable lives and the only thing that gives them some level of satisfaction is dragging others into their misery.  I don't have facebook, instagram, twitter, or any social media and am not presently a member of any online forums outside of this one probably for that reason: haters gonna hate.

 

I tell people I have real relationships with real people in real life and not pretend relationships online.  This is not a dig on anyone who uses these sites and i'm definitely not saying you can't have real relationships online, I'm just bringing some levity into a statement that I generally think is true.  No one talks to one another in public and are always on their phone even when going out to dinner.  I'm probably the only one who doesn't have internet on my phone (by design) and am one of the few who leave my phone in the car.

 

The things people type online are things that for the most part they would NEVER say in public face-to-face.  Probably because I am 6'5" with chiseled body of Greek god.  Haha

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15 minutes ago, Spaulding said:

Could be how and when you read it. I wrote my novel because it was my kind of story and no one else has written it. Five years later, (and working on second book), I read it because it is my kind of story and the only one I can find that fits that spot. aka I read it for fun.

 

I absolutely hated it when I was into grammar editing, but that was more that I'm lousy at grammar editing, so hate it, and still had to do it.

Should have posted this as a poll (if this site does that?) and the results would probably be 100% enjoy reading their own work.  But you are right, it is having to read it so often because my editor sends me the whole book and I have to comb through to see what he has changed.  I probably would love to read it 5 years from now, so you are correct.

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I don't often read my own work, because I love discovering new books. However, if I ever start reading one of my own books for some reason, like, to check out something or to make sure there's not a typo or something, I end up getting immersed in the story and reliving it with the characters. And I enjoy that.

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22 minutes ago, Tommie Lyn said:

I don't often read my own work, because I love discovering new books. However, if I ever start reading one of my own books for some reason, like, to check out something or to make sure there's not a typo or something, I end up getting immersed in the story and reliving it with the characters. And I enjoy that.

Tommie, i sometimes start a new book and suffer through it until I get bored and then hang it up.  that's probably not a good thing for me to confess but it's true.  Like watching a movie and it starts off good but gets off track halfway in and I lose interest.

 

I bet you are a more skilled writer because you are well read.  For me, I am told by my editor that I break a lot of mainstream writing norms and he likes it, so that is the one (perhaps) good thing about having not read much.  I have to invent things on my own.

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4 hours ago, Acogah W Swann said:

What about my fellow members of Christian Writers?  Do you enjoy reading your own work?

Just reading, yes. 

 

After the first couple of editing drafts, I'm dreaming of burning it, throwing it out the window, anything! 😄 It's just a temporary feeling.

 

Think of it like that song you hear on the radio you love... Until you hear it 387 times per hour for weeks! You get sick of it at some point, but later, after you've had time away from hearing it all the time, and it comes on again, you enjoy hearing it. It's kind of like that. 🙂 

 

So yes, that's perfectly normal. 

Edited by Alley
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12 minutes ago, Alley said:

Just reading, yes. 

 

After the first couple of editing drafts, I'm dreaming of burning it, throwing it out the window, anything! 😄 It's just a temporary feeling.

 

Think of it like that song you hear on the radio you love... Until you hear it 387 times per hour for weeks! You get sick of it at some point, but later, after you've had time away from hearing it all the time, and it comes on again, you enjoy hearing it. It's kind of like that. 🙂 

 

So yes, that's perfectly normal. 

OK, now I definitely want to do a poll.  Someone who thinks like me!  Hooray!

 

The analogy I gave my editor is the same idea as you have stated.  I enjoy pizza, but if I had to eat pizza every day for a week I would begin to hate it.

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9 minutes ago, suspensewriter said:

You know, come to think of it, I enjoy listening to my works on audio books, too!  

 

Oh, by the way, Lynn can help you with a poll.

Do you have someone you recommend for professional voice for audio book?  And if so, what do they normally charge?

 

And LYNN!!!!  Help!

 

I would like the poll to be as follows:

 

Do you enjoy reading your own work?

  • Yes, I love my work and want to read it as often as I can - never gets boring
  • Only if I haven't read it in a short while
  • Only if I haven't read it in a long while
  • Prefer to read it a few times to check grammar and then never see it again
  • I hate polls (for the haters)
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14 minutes ago, Acogah W Swann said:

And LYNN!!!!  Help!

 

I would like the poll to be as follows:

 

Do you enjoy reading your own work?

  • Yes, I love my work and want to read it as often as I can - never gets boring
  • Only if I haven't read it in a short while
  • Only if I haven't read it in a long while
  • Prefer to read it a few times to check grammar and then never see it again
  • I hate polls (for the haters)

Polls are done when you make the post. There is a little toggle that drops down (at least on my phone), and you child the poll button. 🙂 

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1 hour ago, Alley said:

Polls are done when you make the post. There is a little toggle that drops down (at least on my phone), and you child the poll button. 🙂 

 

@Alley is correct. When starting a new post (on a desktop browser) it looks like this:
image.png.fc3bcff853bf73de304ea2016c942010.png

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5 hours ago, Acogah W Swann said:

What about my fellow members of Christian Writers?  Do you enjoy reading your own work?


I feel you.
 

I have ADD and my attention isn't all that great to begin with. Every so often I go back and re-read something I wrote ten years ago and crack myself up all over again.

The novel I'm working on now is another story. I started this story about a golem detective in 2014 and this is my eleventh draft. I'm not sick of the novel, but I am sick of working on the novel. This draft was a Page One rewrite (on the advice of my editor, and she was right) so the draft is much different and much improved over the last one, but I'll be very ready when this this is finished and out the door. Which won't be for another three drafts at least. (12 - Prose pass, after which I'll roll out to Beta readers. 13th will be another Prose pass to clean up what I get back from them, after which I'll send it off for Copyediting / Proofreading, followed by the 14th and final pass. I hope. Please dear God.) 😉

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2 minutes ago, Johne said:


I feel you.
 

I have ADD and my attention isn't all that great to begin with. Every so often I go back and re-read something I wrote ten years ago and crack myself up all over again.

The novel I'm working on now is another story. I started this story about a golem detective in 2014 and this is my eleventh draft. I'm not sick of the novel, but I am sick of working on the novel. This draft was a Page One rewrite (on the advice of my editor, and she was right) so the draft is much different and much improved over the last one, but I'll be very ready when this this is finished and out the door. Which won't be for another three drafts at least. (12 - Prose pass, after which I'll roll out to Beta readers. 13th will be another Prose pass to clean up what I get back from them, after which I'll send it off for Copyediting / Proofreading, followed by the 14th and final pass. I hope. Please dear God.) 😉

All of those steps zap the fun out of it, but I understand are necessary for a quality book.  I feel I am ok at the creative side of writing but that's about it.  I like what I do for a living which is real estate and I really don't consider it work because I enjoy it and do it on my own time.  Same thing probably for some authors who just enjoy the process.

 

I do think there will be satisfaction when I have a hard copy of the book in my hand.  I'm thinking i'll be like one of those one-hit-wonders from the 80's.  

 

(singing)

 

Jenny I've got your number
I need to make you mine
Jenny don't change your number
Eight six seven five three oh nine

 

Showing my age.  Groan.

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1 hour ago, Acogah W Swann said:

All of those steps zap the fun out of it, but I understand are necessary for a quality book. 

 

Nod. I've been studying about The Story Grid (and other related story structure philosophies) since 2018 and this 11th draft is really my first draft to incorporate those methods. I'm looking forward to writing the second book in this series because I'll be incorporating everything I've learned in the past three years. Also, Linda and I sat in on a three day Plotting Madness Boot Camp in Lake Tahoe in 2019 and I've got the sequel all plotted out and waiting to assemble. I just need to get this one wrapped up and polished and out before I start writing the next one. They should start to come together faster going forward. 
image.thumb.png.dbfce8dba2e924eb8a3d5eb36028f6aa.png
I was a diehard Pantser for most of my life, and while I enjoyed tinkering here and there, it wasn't anything sustainable. I wrote  when I felt like it, which was sporadic at best. Now I feel like writing at 10 in the morning for two hours when we have our writing sprints, and again after dinner until bed every day except Sunday. I now consider myself a Plantser–I have an appreciation for story structure and Discovery write between the five story elements I outline for each chapter. This is the outline I created in Notion. I fill one of these out for each chapter before I write so I know, generally, where I'm going. It gives me an overview of what needs to happen, and I Discovery write the various elements. 

tldr: This way of writing is different than what I was used to for most of my writing life, but it's fun to be able to craft a new, polished chapter every week. 

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7 hours ago, Acogah W Swann said:

What about my fellow members of Christian Writers?  Do you enjoy reading your own work?

 

It depends. Most of the time I'm okay with it. Sometimes I feel like:

 

writting1.jpg.372aee591c1358c9ccd85e31474a8fb0.jpg

 

This is usually a temporary feeling. 

 

I might have an idea for you. Part of my proofing process is to have my manuscript read out loud, usually by Adobe (but I think MS Word does this too). Maybe if you heard your writing read back to you, you might feel different about it?

 

The Adobe voice is a bit robotic, so I downloaded some other voices. I really like the "BBC News" voice, but I also have to be careful. Sometimes I get lost in the voice and forget to closely listen for errors. There's something about an English accent that makes my work sound very sophisticated. 🤩 

 

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I'm noticing more and more that some of you are on another level which is great but at the same time exhausting just to think about all these steps.

 

And Accord, on that GIF posted - I did not give you permission to use my photo.  Haha

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