Am I Done Yet by Yvonne Lehman

Posted by on Feb 11, 2015 | 2 comments

Am I Done Yet by Yvonne Lehman

I know you will enjoy what my guest, Yvonne Lehman has to say today about knowing when a task is done. It’s wise advice, not only for writers, but for life. And she gives us an opportunity for writers at the end!


Wandering Wednesdays

A student asked me if a writer has the luxury to say, “I’m done? It always seems that something needs fixing.”


I responded that, yes, there is a time when a writer must say, “I’m all done.” And a lot depends on what you’re referring to when you see something that needs fixing. If there are glaring things you know are wrong, then you haven’t finished, but need to continue rewriting. I know one of my weaknesses is describing the setting. So I study how others do it, get brochures that describe the places I’m writing about and then use my own words to describe the setting and I’ve received compliments about my settings.


I could tell myself I should travel to those places and experience the setting myself and not finish the book until I do. That would be wrong. I could say I’m not done because I haven’t experienced it first-hand, but that’s self-defeating. We can only use the amount of skill we have, and the research we’ve done. We grow as writers, just as we grow and learn (or should) in every area of our lives and even on our deathbeds we can say, “I’m not done improving.”


We need to have confidence in what we know and what we can do at a particular time. I look backPocket clock on the beach at my first book and can’t read it now because I see glaring errors, or see how the guidelines of writing have changed. Part of that is because I didn’t know enough about life or the craft of writing. So, we’re never done.


That’s sort of how it is with raising children. We do our best. But it’s after our children are grown and gone that we look back and say, “I could have done it better,” but I had to learn as I went along. That’s how it is with writing. We can only give out as much as we have and can probably say it’s not as good as someone else. But we shouldn’t be competing with someone else. Just do the best we can at the given time.


If we always say, I need more education, more experience, more maturity, etc. then we’ll never finish anything. Being objective enough to realize something isn’t perfect is fine. But, as I said in the beginning of this, if you know of glaring craft, character, plot errors then of course you should fix them. Just a general feeling of not being perfect is simply common to creative people. In writing, we’re showing our “insides” to the world and we want it to look good. But, we’re human beings with flaws and limitations, therefore our work may exhibit that. But as long as we’re trying to improve we are accomplishing, even if an editor might return the material we submit.


I got a little wordy with my answer, when I might have simply written, “There’s a time to fix and there’s a time to let go.” (But I am a novelist!)



About the author:

Yvonne Lehman 2013[1] head shotYvonne Lehman, best-selling author of 55 novels with more than 3,000,000 books in print founded and directed the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference for 25 years and is now director of the Blue Ridge “Autumn in the Mountains” Novelist Retreat. She has joined Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas as Acquisitions and Managing Editor of Candlelight Romance and Guiding Light Women’s Fiction. She earned a Master’s Degree in English from Western Carolina University and has taught English and Creative Writing on the college level. Her recent releases include a novella in Reluctant Brides (Barbour) and Crashing into Christmas (LPC). The Stranger’s Kiss will be in a medieval novel compilation (Barbour, November 2015). Her Moments series (non-fiction compilations by many authors – Grace Publishing) includes 2014 releases Divine Moments and Christmas Moments. Scheduled for release in 2015 are Spoken Moments, Precious Moments, and Christmas Moments Book #2. Her 50th novel is Hearts that Survive – A Novel of the TITANIC (Abingdon), which she signs periodically at the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge TN. She blogs at and Novel Rocket Blog.

Yvonne is also responsible for the Moments series: (40+ authors)Divine Moments

Divine Moments – 50 stories about God’s presence in the world and his personal, direct involvement in our lives

Christmas Moments – 50 inspirational stories of the true meaning of Christmas

Spoken Moments – 52 stories about the power of words: negative, positive, and God’s words



She is now accepting stories for:

Precious Moments – stories about one’s childhood, one’s children, other children, and some even written by children

Christmas Moments Book #2 – inspirational, meaningful articles about Christmas

There is no payment, authors get one free copy, discount on orders, and all royalties are donated to Samaritan’s Purse – Put Precious Moments or Christmas Moments Book #2 in subject line and email to


  1. Yvonne, you are a treasure for the Body of Christ. Thank you for sharing your gifts with us.

    • It’s an honor to have her on my blog!

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