Friday, 24 February 2012
How good is good enough?
I am writing this post after an inspiring conversation with Ken, my editor. We both had worked into the morning hours finishing our respective homework before our 10 a.m. Starbucks meeting.
Around 3 a.m., I paused for a few minutes wondering how we would know when my book is finished. How good is good enough? From my experience, when you think something is finished you still have a way to go; there is always something to change to make it better.
I remember a story about the making of Michael Jackson's Thriller. After he and Quincy Jones recorded the songs, they listened to the entire album and cut the three songs they liked the least. Michael wrote three new ones including the number one single 'Beat It.' I have borrowed this approach to upgrade the stories in my book. How did they know three was the right number of songs to replace before the album was finished?
I will keep editing until the edits are less valuable than what they are replacing. At that point, quality will speak for itself and good will turn into great. Great is good enough.