A few weeks ago I quit blogging here, because the anxiety of writing my 1996 diary, which is my life now translated to 25 years ago, was getting in the way of what I must also do.
Of what is also, my life and destiny.
But, as is already implied in that sentence, naturally, I also have an obligation here.
I have not forgotten my art here, the time travel project and the diary.
Although at times I wished I could have forgotten it.
The whole writing offline and working in silence on publishing my books, fell to pieces when a few weeks ago I discovered mistakes in one of my books, which I had already tried to correct. When the “improved” test copy came in and I discovered I had actually made it worse, I decided to pull the book from publishing, and give it a proper review.
To not just correct the layout mistakes that had gotten in there (blank pages etc) when I made my corrections and added another chapter as well;
But to do a page-by-page review, really getting into the details and be sure I wanted them that way.
I wanted to make absolutely certain that when I received the next test copy, I would not find any mistakes.
Ever since I’ve started to publish my books last year, I ve been consumed with perfectionism. But it’s perfectionism with a vengeance, because in the initial printing process I can bypass it!
I KNOW done is better than perfect.
Not just because if I have the choice between doing 20 books with some minor errors or 4 books perfectly?
I have to choose the 20 good-enough ones.
I simply write way, way too much to do it otherwise.
So there is that practicality, that logic behind being a superfluous writer that anyone can understand, but there’s also a more primal emotion to it.
Because I like my work to be a bit raw and bloody, and have some errors.
If I regret anything then it’s reviewing my older books too often, because I felt it cost me both too much time as well as in some cases possibly the very soul of the book.
I recall one in particular, and I never actively sold that book ever in the four years it’s been for sale.
So I knew very well not to go overboard with the editing.
Yet with the books I published afterwards and even (now) pulled from publishing, the opposite happened.
I don’t actively sell those either, because I’m afraid that there are mistakes in there!
So I ve learned from the past – I now do publish them without overdoing the editing. I do not make the same mistake twice and “Done is better than perfect” is my badge of honor really.
But then it bites me in the ass:
I read them and find mistakes, and feel uncomfortable selling them because of one little tiny mistake I saw.
Or I don’t dare to read them and then I don’t sell them because I didn’t read them out of fear.
Even though, and now you’re really going to see how badly I m doing in this area, way more often I read them and think:
“This is so good! How funny! How well written! I m so proud.”
Yet perfectionism just blocks it.
Not in the first editing and publishing round, like it does with other writers.
I can’t get into the swing of selling.
And now, November 2021 or November 1996 as it is in my time travel project, I am no longer blogging a diary because it gives me anxiety;
Which has resulted in my love life and sexuality dying on me.
It has resulted in not writing.
And ultimately, I think you guessed it, in not living.
As desirable or even nessecary, a smoothed out life without any secrets and any reason for anxiety, seems at times (I ve taken Lauren 1994-1996 offline half a dozen times and counting!);
Ultimately it is not for me.
I will have to learn with my chaotic, fear-filled double life, like I have to live with books having rough edges.
My attempts at proper, worthy, perfect books are blocking my life’s force, just like my attempts at a proper worthy life is blocking it.
Yes, I am messy.
And so are my books.
But for the past couple of weeks I ve been dead, and I can only hope it’s not too late for any of the things I lost to be saved.
To put my pulled book back online.
To slam those diaries into a cover and hit publish.
Pull myself up by my bootstraps and get back into the saddle of everything.
I hope my sex life is not dead for good.
I hope that underneath the cleaned up properness, something, is still breathing.
An Unexamined Life Is Not Worth Living.
Subscribe to this blog to receive the new episodes of Lauren 1996 in your Inbox.
My diaries are available at LULU
New books will be added, including the time travel project books Letter from a stranger and Dear Nikki.
The best way to receive updates on when these books are ready,
is to subscribe to this blog.
Button on this page, probably on the top right.
Or follow my Facebook page
/ Twitter: @LSHarteveld