Monday, May 1, 2017

Don't Mind the Gap by Kell Andrews

When I finished my first novel, I gave it to my husband to read and asked, "Does it seem like a real book?"

It seemed like an actual book with a plot and characters. More or less -- I was aware that there was something that was NOT like a book about it -- or not like the kind of book I wanted to write. I had created a complex community, huge cast of characters, and an original magic system and grafted it onto a lot of historical research. In my inexperienced hands, the story felt kluged together with rubber cement and cellophane tape. There was a huge gap between my vision and my execution.

In the end, after revision, that manuscript was enough like a book that I got an agent, but not enough that we managed to sell it.

For my next project, I aimed to write a book with a scope I could manage -- I set it more or less in my own backyard. That book turned out to be Deadwood -- and although it got published, there was still a gap between what I wanted to achieve and what I accomplished creatively.

The book I'm working on now is a story I put off for years because I knew I couldn't do it justice. Then eventually I started writing because whether I achieve my vision of what I want or not, it's the kind of story I want to read. The only way to read this particular one is to write it, whether it ends up published or not.

There will always be a gap between what I want to write and what actually shows up on the page, but being too conscious of that gap means I won't cross it. Instead, I'm going to fill it with words and maybe find myself on the other side.


  1. So true about the gap between one's vision, and what one eventually produces.
    ("Mind the gap" also made me think of my British upbringing. You hear it all the time on the London Underground.)

  2. This so speaks to me! I love revisiting a book project idea that once challenged me and I didn't have the tools at the time to write - but now do. The very first book I wrote still sits in a shoebox. It's a middle grade book that will go nowhere but led into my 1st MG book, Joshua and the Lightning Road. So it did serve its purpose. It led me to writing books AND I dusted it off recently and used a battle scene from it in my recent book, Joshua and the Arrow Realm. Love that it got new life :) . Keep writing, keep filling the gap!


Thanks for adding to the mayhem!