It’s a new dawn, a new day, a new year, and time for me to make a new start. I have realized, now that I’m about a third of the way through my newest middle grade novel—my fourth—that it just isn’t working. I have to start all over again. Back to page one. It happens. But as a very wise editor once told me, “This is where the real writers are separated from the wannabe writers: A real writer will start again; a wannabe writer will give up.”
Oh sure, there’s a wannabe inside me, looking back at all that wasted time, feeling defeated, and craving cookie dough. But I’m forcing her to pretend to be a real writer. I’m forcing her to sit down and face the blankest, hardest page of all: page one. She’d like to make a quick trip to the frig first. No, I tell her. We have too much work to do. So, she sits down at the computer—a little angry, a little huffy, a little hungry. And we start again.