One book leads to another...

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Revealing Regrets And Notable Nuggets

I lost a hubcap off of my T-bird one afternoon during rush-hour, right in the middle of the intersection. I heard it clang on the pavement, from the side mirror I watched it roll away. Should I have stopped right there in the intersection; halting traffic as I chased it? Did it really matter? Well, shoot yeah, it mattered. For the two weeks it took to find a new hubcap it felt as if I were walking around with a run in my stocking! 

My thoughts (naturally) turned to writing and how rejections aren’t the only thing that can plague a writer. Regrets ought to be at least a close second. You know, that one nagging paragraph that, now that you see it in print, should really have been worded differently (Gads!), or the blog that garnered one measly ‘like’.  What’s a writer to do? Keep writing, of course! Regrets are naught but revelations of yesterday’s unknown. Today, you know better.

On the off-chance that I’m not the only writer to ever encounter the dreaded regrets I did a little research and discovered some truly interesting stuff. Anyone remember “Brokeback Mountain”?

Mark Twain
Tom Sawyer
“I perhaps made a mistake in not writing it in the first person,” Twain confided after the book’s completion in a letter to Atlantic Monthly editor William Dean Howells. Another anxiety (misplaced, it turns out) ran deeper than the narrative mode: “It is not a boy’s book, at all. It will only be read by adults.”
William Powell
The Anarchist Cookbook
As an adult convert to Christianity, Powell regrets his youthful work. “The book … was a misguided product of my adolescent anger at the prospect of being drafted and sent to Vietnam to fight in a war that I did not believe in,” he wrote in 2000.
Arthur Conan Doyle
“The Final Problem”
After killing off Sherlock Holmes, Conan Doyle declared defiantly, “If I had not killed him, he would certainly have killed me.” But he lived to regret it—or caved to the pressure—and brought him back to life ten years later.

There now, I feel better all over more than anyplace else, don’t you? Specifics aside, have you experienced regrets?  As shown above, true writers keep writing. Why do you suppose that is?



  1. We keep writing because those doggone characters won't shut up, lol. I don't have any regrets right now and I hope to say that 10, 15 years from now!

    1. Haha! I have to agree, pesky little things; those characters! :-)

  2. There will always be regrets, but all we can do is keeping moving forward and keep writing. I've actually learned a lot since Hurricane Crimes and 30 Seconds were published, and now I cringe to think of some writing mistakes I did in those stories, but I can't do anything about that now.


Any thoughts? Join the conversation, comments welcome here!