I wrote Project Sparkle in a hothouse of writing. I started brainstorming the idea during a workshop on character creation. I wrote the first three scenes for different class assignments. Every other week last spring, I brought a different chapter in for my classmates to critique.
The constant feedback was both useful and difficult. I believe it gave me the courage to write a very challenging story.
However, I haven't been required to show Project Demo to anyone. I haven't needed to polish any chapters for evaluation. I've shared small pieces of it with my Chicago writing group, and a few more with a critique partner. Recently I did some critique work for a published friend, and she insisted I should let her return the favor. But I'm strangely hesitant to share anymore.
Logically, I don't want any feedback right now because I already know many of Project Demo's flaws, mostly that its plot is still fluid. So at the moment I'm working through my second draft, trying to fix that.
But there's an illogical side to this. Even though my critique partners are wise and encouraging, I fear that any feedback will overwhelm me with everything that needs to be done. Worse, maybe they'll tell me something that makes me question my main character, or doubt my entire premise.
I don't think I've ever been so careful about revealing a piece of work. Am I being smart? Or do I just need to get over myself and bust my door wide open?
When do you shut the door to your writing?
And because I've loved this choral number ever since I first heard it in high school...