The first draft of anything is shit. - Ernest Hemingway
I'm glad Hemingway said it first because that was my thought as I looked over the first draft of my manuscript. It's amazing at how you can go from complete elation that the first draft is finished to "what a bunch of crap". Let me say this, that's one heck of a ride.
Now, was I expecting it to be perfectly written with all the blanks filled in on the first go around? No, but I guess there's always a part of me that hopes I have little elves working on it for me while I sleep - kind of like the old shoemaker.
What that means is I'm going to have to buckle down and do some serious work here. I guess I'm going to have to take a page from my characters. They can't reach their happily ever after without some hard work, and neither will I.
It's time to start cleaning up the mess, put everything in its place and tidy it up. Reminds me of my closet. With that door closed, I can't see the mess that's growing behind it until I reach in for something I need.
In the end, I guess it's just time to stop doubting the work, and myself, and see what I can make of it. It may be a bunch of crap in the end or it could turn into the wonderful story I wanted to relate.
Time will tell. And you never know if it's just your own perception and criticalness of the work or if it really does lack superb writing. Reminds me of the words of Robert Benchley, "It took me fifteen years to discover I had no talent for writing, but I couldn't give it up because by that time I was too famous."