I'm a very bad dog-parent. To write a previous post about my dog getting over her fear of water, I actually had to email my mom and ask how old my dog was so I could give the correct number of years. (she's still 50% analog and has all birthdays/ages written on a wall calendar)
Before I gave in and emailed her, I was looking back through my old posts... 'cause I know I've put up a post or two on Eva's birthday with her age and a photo... but for the life of me, I couldn't find any of them.
Maybe I need a new label for 'pets'...?
Anyways, in that search, I unearthed this old post of mine about looking back on old work with a new perspective...
It was interesting, and oddly relevant, since a few weeks ago I was cleaning up my back-up drive, found some old writing files, and re-read Project #5, (AotD) the Northern Fairytale story.
Since the story is only about 1/3 written, and was started as an exercise to give me headspace from TRoRS before heading into my first round of edits, and then I continued to pick away at AotD whenever I was edit-blocked on TRoRS, the story was... quite interesting to re-read. And a good lesson on why multi-tasking is impossible for 98% of human brains (I won't bore you with footnotes, but a lot of research suggests this is true).
There's a lot of good in AotD... certainly more than I could see when I saved the file for the final time and dove into other work.
...but there's also a heck of a lot of things to laugh at. It is an unfinished first draft after all...
The major 'laugh-point' is, because TRoRS switches between past and present tense, I guess whenever I returned to AotD (unfortunately) I carried through with that... often switching within the same scene. Sometimes within the same paragraph. And (embarrassingly) more than a few times in a single sentence.
...fixing it is an amusing (future) prospect to ponder. Though I still do love the Lady of Crows as much as I did the first time she spilled out of my head and onto the keyboard...
I wrote that old post two years ago. While I remember writing it, while I recognize my own 'voice' in the wording (and the self-deprecating humour), I have new perspective. I don't think I agree with it 100% anymore.
More than re-reading an old story after giving it some space, re-visiting an old opinion is infinitely more interesting.
One of the primary things that has always driven me to write is a long history of looking stupid.
...and again, it's not something I'm angry about, or upset about. It's simply one of the building-blocks of who I am.
But it is interesting to compare my attitude in that first old post with this one (written 5 months later), and then this one (written 2 months after that, and yes TRoRS was previously titled BF).
...and in re-reading these few posts, I'm not entirely certain what my perspective on the subject is now...
...but finding lines that make me laugh, or lines of description that take my breath away (figuratively, not because they are Victor Hugo-esque run-on sentences...) in a partially written first-draft story, well, I think that's an amazing thing.
Having a bit of perspective on old work, and being surprised more at the good than the bad, well that certainly speaks volumes, both about my growth as a writer, and as a person.
...and even though it would give me a more objective sense of how far I've come as a writer, I still have zero desire to ever unearth my first piece of 'longish fiction', (melodramatically entitled) "The Burning Cross", written for a Grade 9 Social Studies project.
Somethings are best kept buried, or burned ;)