TO FINISH OR NOT TO FINISH?
THE FINISHING LINE HAS A TENDENCY TO BE MOBILE
A fundamental rule, where writing is concerned, is that any manuscript you submit should be as good as you can make it within the constraints of your particular circumstances. If you are writing to a deadline, then your finishing date is set for you. On the other hand, if you are working to your own schedule, then the day you type THE END and mean it is much more of a moveable feast.
By this evening, I had produced a highly acceptable result and printed it out. But can I do better? That’s a question best answered after catching up with one’s sleep—plus a little perspective.
Even if you don’t have an external deadline, the practicalities of life mean that you rarely have the luxury of writing on until everything is just the way you want it. Money has to be earned, there are personal commitments to be met—and so it goes. Still, only a damn fool submits inadequate work.
One trick I use for evaluating work is to open the manuscript in question at random. If I then find something that strikes discordant note, it is back to re-writing. Of course, I also read the whole manuscript through many times—but I use random selection as an additional test.
Right now I’m too tired to do anything other than go to bed.