It took me a long time to say that anything I wrote was "good." It seemed presumptuous of me to say something like that about my own writing.
On the other hand, I needed a measure to know how much more work I needed to do, what should be kept and what should be removed. So I always had a sense of whether a chapter or a scene or an entire book worked.
Thing is, most (all) books aren't perfect. Perfect is the enemy of the good.
I have my own inner gauge of my own writing, which books I think are better than others, but I've decided that I'll never say. But inside, I know.
Almost every book, though, has scenes or chapters where I think I really hit the mark. Not perfect, but pretty close. Frankly, if I can have three or four of these chapters in a book, I feel pretty good, especially if they are strategically located -- the beginning or the end or a nexus points in the story.
All the books I've so far released had those chapters -- or the books weren't released.
Anyway, in the book I'm currently writing, I feel like all 5 chapters I've written so far have met the gold standard. I don't believe that has ever happened, and I'd love to keep the string going. Basically, I feel like all 5 chapters have been inspired by that most creative part of me.
At some point, the requirement of the story will probably force me to write something that isn't "inspired." I will have to work at writing something that moves the story along and I may not be perfectly satisfied because it didn't have a immaculate creation.
But I am going to continue to give myself the chance. Part of it is the working process I've come up with. I now try to have the chapter completely written in my head before I sit down to write it. I've always done this to some extent, but there were always chapters I started cold, or chapters where I only had a few bits and pieces.
Thing about waiting for inspiration is that you can wait a long time -- sometimes forever. So you go ahead and craft a chapter. I'm not really sure if these crafted chapters are worse than the inspired ones -- they might even be better.
But there is no better feeling than a chapter coming out on page the way it feels like it should be.
Someday I hope that an entire book is immaculately conceived.
1 week ago