BUT, today I finally saved 'Brake Fluid', and all my major/necessary changes have been completed, which scraped in at 54,172 words.
I also sent it out to... (hang on a second, my brain is a little fried...) ...
Now, this is a first for me. Sure, I've handed over full manuscripts to my local writing group before, and worked with online CP's on a dozen or more occasions... but I've never sent a single story to so many people at the same time...
And it makes me really excited :)
Before, I was always leery of sending out unpolished work 'cause that horrible voice in the back of my head would whisper that I messed up something big, and someone was going to laugh. Even though I've got a pretty good poker face, it took a long time to even be comfortable handing work to my writing group and getting feedback on all my idiotic, dyslexic slip-ups/mistakes. I could really only handle a few people reading my work at a time. I'd brace myself for impact, endure it, then suck it up and get to work trying to patch holes and blast-out unnecessary sections before taking a deep breath, and letting one or two more people shred it to bits.
I feel very grateful for this online community of writers who all let me in, were friendly, chatty, and encouraging, even when I posted first-draft-sketchy-writing.
Thanks everyone :) It's 'cause of you guys I managed to take this (bigger) step.
Sure, I'm still apprehensive that someone's going to find something huge, glaring, and un-fixable in 'Brake Fluid'**, but at the same time, I'm hoping all those wonderful readers will find all the awful problems so I can continue to improve. The desire to make my writing better now outweighs the fear of getting laughed at.
I'm up for the challenge :)
So slap me with a rolled-up newspaper and say, 'bad writer!' whenever I need correcting :)
You guys are awesome.
Thanks again (in advance ;p).
* I've sent it out, so if you think you should have received it, and didn't, please send me an email.
** ...or worse, tell me it's flat-out-boring