Recently, a writer friend of mine was lamenting the fact that she can't seem to get out of her own way with the book she's working on. She's written pages and pages and pages only to scrap them and write more pages. And I think it's driving her batty. This one book - the culmination of a trilogy - is undoing her.
I get it. She wants the book to be perfect. Or if not perfect, at least a bit better than her last book (which was excellent by the way, but we're all always trying to make the next book better than the last). But I think her inner editor is hamstringing her.
You know the inner editor. She's a bitch. Always with the 'this sucks, start over' and never with the 'this is awesome, keep going'.
Oh, she's a bitch, but she does keep us honest, nipping at our heels like a Border Collie. So, I'm not saying get rid of her entirely. But there are times when the bitch needs a muzzle. Especially when she's keeping us from getting the book written.
I struggle with her all the time. All. The. Time. She's being particularly vocal right now, as a matter of fact. "You're doing this wrong," she says. "You need to scrap this and start over." "You need to rewrite this scene, and if you do, then you need to rework that scene and, by the way, if you do that, you'll need to go back and fix the part of Sleeping Ugly that refers to..." Ugh.
Whack that inner editor on the nose with a rolled-up newspaper. She's not being helpful right now. Let her out of her kennel after the book is written, when it's time for editing and that bad dog has learned to sit and stay.
I'd ask if you struggle with your inner editor, but that's a given. So, how do you get your inner editor to behave?