A few months ago I was listening to a radio programme about violinists. I'm not musical - Chopsticks on the piano is about it - but it was fascinating hearing various musicians talk with such passion about the soloists.
Nigel Kennedy, it was universally agreed, was a perfect violinist, literally note perfect. Yehudi Menuhin, on the other hand, made errors. 'But I'd rather have the Menuhin recordings,' one of the musicians piped up. The others agreed. They enjoyed Menuhin's passion, his heart-felt commitment to his music, and that over rode any considerations of perfection. Put simply, it was the mistakes that made Menuhin the violinist he was.
And it got me thinking: why do we writers tie ourselves up in knots about some nebulous ideas about perfection? We edit and edit and edit until our shoulders seize up and our hands ache. We don't send our work out because it's 'not quite there yet', even though we finished that draft a year ago. We tinker and fiddle and primp our words, searching for perfection.
It's not there! And even if it was, would we want it? Wouldn't we as readers rather choose the heart-felt, the committed, the passion for story telling over mere perfection? Go for it, let your words soar like Menuhin's playing and stuff the imperfections.