I reach a point in every manuscript I write--yes, including the one I'm working on now--at which I'm completely convinced this is the worst example of storytelling in the history of literature.
That's not unusual. Every writer lives a lie. We're all certain that we're frauds and that soon (very, very soon) we'll write something so bad that our total ineptitude will be exposed to the world. And when we hit those realizations--which are usually delusions--we stop what we're doing because we believe that whatever little talent we once had has abandoned us and we should immediately apply to a school that can teach us how to code.
Now, some people who try to write really should be studying to become coders; don't get me wrong. Not everyone can do this job no matter how many great story ideas they think they should tell me about in the supermarket when I'm just trying to buy a sugary cereal without being discovered for the 10-year-old that I remain to this day. There are bad writers just like there are bad plumbers, bad athletes, bad tailors and bad steam pipe fitters. Everybody can't be great, or even good, at something just because they decide to give it a shot.
But others are at least professionals, and those are the writers who stop, take a deep breath and then get back to the keyboard. Some go back and revise what they've written and others, like me, just plow ahead knowing they'll revisit the really egregious pieces when they've gotten even a shaky framework together.
The key is to keep going. The myth of "Writer's Block" was developed by people who decided they were writing something truly awful and just stopped because they were afraid they'd continue to do so. I have railed on (and on and on) here about my absolute rejection of that term so I won't reiterate my position now. Suffice it to say what's necessary is to have enough confidence to know that if you write something lousy you can fix it. If you write nothing, you take that option away from yourself and you ensure that you will always have written something lousy. It should be an easy choice.
Right now I'm working on past confidence. I'm sure this book is a steaming pile of wreckage but I'm going to keep going and when I finally sit back to read through it, as I have many times on other manuscripts, I believe I'll find it needs some work, but it's not the unmitigated disaster i believe it to be today.
Just keep at it.
Today is Opening Day at Yankee Stadium in New York. I will not be available until the final out has been made. Don't call me.