Franken-script was a poorly written manuscript forced on readers who in return gave kind advice and suggestions. This flawed yet loved manuscript was lightly revised to eliminate the ultra-yucky parts and considered to be a prize winning student.
It found an editor to love it and whip it into shape. And that’s where the fun begins!
The brutal editor claimed a skeleton lay underneath the ragged body of a manuscript but would take a whole lot of work to add muscle and skin. Deep sorrow followed. It wasn’t the prize winning student after all. It was in fact a poor-mans representation of what a manuscript should be. A body created with inferior parts.
Two days later while playing at a writers conference, the grotesque manuscript found its way onstage in front of an auditorium filled with other writers in a slush-pile exercise. Out of almost a hundred manuscripts submitted, it was chosen at random to be one of just 6–6!!! manuscripts read out loud for all to hear. A panel of New York agents, editors, and small publishers judged when they’d reject it and move on. Followed by commentary. A slaughter ensued.
Fortunately it was anonymous and no one is the wiser. To protect the innocent I will not reveal the name of the bloody manuscript.
On the hour drive home from the conference with the tattered remains of the manuscript oozing in my car, I had a revelation. Or something.
Patchwork repair was no good. Severe trauma isn’t fixed with duct tape. This required reconstructive surgery.
Not long after arriving home, the new plan was set in place. I could rebuild it. Make it stronger. I had the tools. It would take time but in the end the skeleton will hold up to the new body created for it.
A new manuscript began. A new direction was created. New life emerged from the once monstrous manuscript. No longer would it be known by it’s former shell. It lives! It lives!
So let the lesson be learned. Out of hubris do not force an ugly, rotten, disgusting manuscript on the masses. Rebuild it. Gut it. Strip it to the gleaming white bones and layer strand after strand of new vibrant muscle until it beats again with life.
And when you’re forced to see the awful truth under the bright light of scrutiny, don’t run and hide. Use your tools and make it beautiful.
Doubt doesn’t belong in the lab.
*Note: The brutal editor is in fact an excellent editor and held nothing back for which I am grateful.