Writing Perfection is an Admirable Goal but Unattainable

10 Apr

003Happy Thursday my friends!  Let’s get right to it, shall we?


Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.

Vince Lombardi
I love quoting football coaches and applying it to writing. Don’t ask why because I know not.


I chose a quote about perfection for a fairly good reason.  Let me explain.

As you know, I’m on the homestretch with my new novel “Resurrecting Tobias.”  The editor has it now and is doing a line edit of it.  She does twenty pages and then sends them to me so I can work on them while she does the next twenty pages, and so on.

What happens when the edit is done?  Well, I had originally planned on publishing the book immediately as an ebook….but now….

I don’t think the book is ready yet.  I have to be careful here, because we walk a tightrope in trying to make a book the perfect book, when in fact it will never be perfect….but….

This book is very important to me, and I want it to represent my finest writing…..so I’m going to tweak it some more until I’m satisfied.  In the final analysis, I’m the one who has to be completely satisfied with my effort.  It may not sell…it may sell a ton….but no matter what happens, I don’t want to look back at it a year from now and wish I had put in just a little more effort on it.

So the process continues.


Never….Never….settle for second best just to be expedient.  Remember, always, that writing is a craft…an art form…and it is representative of you as a writer.


Since I’m typing this at seven p.m. Wednesday night, I’m going to make this short.  It is officially time to call it a day.


“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”

26 Responses to “Writing Perfection is an Admirable Goal but Unattainable”

  1. Janine Huldie April 10, 2014 at 2:47 pm #

    I totally trust your analysis here and do think that when you are ready this book will be as close to perfect as one can get and think that is all anyone (including you ask for). Totally excited for you still very much and also as always wishing you a wonderful day ahead now!! 🙂

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 2:57 pm #

      Thank you Janine. When I finish I want to know that this is the best I can do….I’m not there yet.

  2. RealHousewifeSL April 10, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

    You just can’t rush perfection. I think you will absolutely know when you are DONE and until then keep on truckin…or writing:)

    I was super impressed with a book I read recently, it was called Child 44. The writer was really young and the book was so well developed! He said that he sent it in for the first edit and it wasn’t done AT ALL. He almost rewrote the while thing I think he said…but I was glad he did because it was a very good read! I’m sure he’s glad he went thru that process too. There’s an interesting Epilogue…you know a lot about those too, huh? Lol. Have a great day Bill!

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

      Thanks for sharing that, Kelly. That’s where I am now….I won’t re-write the whole thing, but there are loose ends I’m not happy about.

    • marlenebertrand April 10, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

      It’s going to be a great day when you release your novel. I like that you are keeping it and not letting it go until it is the absolute best you can do. I’m intrigued by the concept of someone only giving out their best. That’s respect. Thanks, Bill. I can hardly wait to read your novel. I have no doubt it’s going to be amazing.

      • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 3:32 pm #

        Marlene, you are one of my greatest cheerleaders and I thank you for it. This book is too important to me…when I finish it I promise you it will be my best.

  3. 1authorcygnetbrown April 10, 2014 at 3:29 pm #

    Writing a book is like baking a cake. Take it out too soon and its not done. Leave it in too long, its burnt. The trick is to know when done is done.

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 3:32 pm #

      Donna, that is, indeed, the trick. I hope I learn it. 🙂 Thank you!

      • 1authorcygnetbrown April 10, 2014 at 5:35 pm #

        It does get better with practice. (I think)

      • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 5:45 pm #

        We can only hope, Donna! 🙂

  4. Shauna L Bowling April 10, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

    I like the idea of working on 20 pages at a time when the book is in the edit stage. That makes it much more manageable for both of you.

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 4:57 pm #

      It really does, Sha! Editing is a chore, and trying to do too much of it all at once is overwhelming. Have a great day dear friend.

  5. Ruchira Khanna April 10, 2014 at 5:48 pm #

    Your will to make it a perfect book…inspires me!

    Wishing you the best, Bill 🙂

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 5:50 pm #

      Thank you so much Ruchira. Let’s hope I can do it. 🙂

  6. Christy Birmingham April 10, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

    I understand what you mean about wanting your book to be the best it can be – likening it to a tightrope is a good image (hint: future blog post for you!!). I am excited for your book but there is no rush… you will know when the time is right. 🙂

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 6:10 pm #

      Christy, thank you so much. Let’s hope I know when the time is right. LOL Wouldn’t that be horrible if I didn’t? 🙂

  7. froggy213 April 10, 2014 at 7:33 pm #

    We can’t reach perfection? Wow, you just took the wind out of my sail Bill. LOL.
    Great post, and I will still keep trying as you are.

    • Billybuc April 10, 2014 at 8:20 pm #

      I wish, Greg! I guess it gives us something to shoot for, right? Thanks, buddy, and have a great weekend.

  8. Michael Milec April 11, 2014 at 12:09 am #

    Hello Bill. By presenting your finest writing would mean the best in your potentiality. Usually it is in our human relative perfection when suddenly a peace will overwhelm you and you’ll know that you’ve reach the goal by God given ability. The rest of us will hear from you about,since while sharing those feelings in describing , we will hear some jubilant words like never before… With best wishes my friend, many blessings.

    • Billybuc April 11, 2014 at 12:32 am #

      Michael my friend, I am reminded of my grandmother who, when asked if the cake was ready, would always say, “It will be ready when it is ready.” 🙂

      Have a wonderful weekend my friend and thank you.b


  9. amprophetofmylife April 11, 2014 at 9:35 am #

    Hi! am glad I met you to sharpen me that I unleash the writer in me. Thanks a lot I believe God send me just to meet you there in the hup pages. I will soon be writing my hups but am still finding my way around the huppages and your hups are the ones that got me stuck in. Thanks

    • Billybuc April 11, 2014 at 2:16 pm #

      Amprophetofmylife, I’m so happy you decided to follow me, and thank you for your kind words. If I can be of any help feel free to contact me.

  10. Melanie Chisnall April 11, 2014 at 10:12 am #

    I couldn’t agree more with you, Bill. As somewhat of a perfectionist, I know this is a weakness of mine – sometimes. But, when it comes to putting out writing of any kind – I don’t care what other writers say, I won’t put out anything but what I’m 100% happy with. Otherwise, what’s the point? So you put out a half-assed job because someone said you shouldn’t try and perfect your art? No… don’t agree with that at all. I’m glad to hear you’re spending time making it exactly the way you want it. You’ve come this far. Have a brilliant weekend! It’s summer here again, so fans on full blast. Just when we got a hint of autumn. Oh well, guess I shouldn’t complain, hey? LOL. 🙂

    • Billybuc April 11, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

      Mel, it makes my heart swell to read your words. Thank you! It is so nice to know there are other writers who feel that way. Writing is too important to me, and I refuse to cheapen it by accepting 80% instead of my full effort.

      Have a great weekend, no matter what season it is. 🙂

  11. leslie April 11, 2014 at 12:36 pm #

    An excellent post with excellent advice, my friend! As you know – i too am very committed to my first book. I don’t think it will EVER be perfect – or even close. To this day i am tweaking – and probably always will.
    It evolves as do we – and one day a sentence reads perfectly when in a month – it does not..
    i’m a tad OCD and need to stop picking at a scab well on its way to healing..lol

    • Billybuc April 11, 2014 at 2:15 pm #

      Hey Sis, you stated it perfectly. One day reads perfectly and in a month it does not…I know that feeling all too well.

      hugs Sis


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