Big change takes time. You don't just wake up one day and suddenly you have a whole new life. If you want that new life, you have to work for it.
I'll be honest. I finished reading The Bird and the Blade a week and a half ago, and I was a little shaken, because I saw a huge difference between the writing I want to produce, and the writing I am currently producing. Megan Bannen writes like I want to write. I felt completely immersed in her world, I fell in love with her characters.
When I compare my own writing to the writing I found in her pages, I felt inadequate. My stories mean a lot to me, but I'm not delivering them with the impact I really want.
So you could say that I'm currently trapped on a tight rope, balancing between the Sarah I was two years ago, who liked to write stories on her laptop as a hobby, whenever she had a spare time, and the Sarah I want to be in the coming years, who is published and proud of the work out there for others to read.
In some ways, I'm disappointed. This time last year, I was proud of my writing. But then I started studying the craft, and I started recognizing all these issues that I didn't even notice before. Now, all I see are issues. The story is there, but the beauty isn't. They're simply nice stories.
Now, I know that manuscripts undergo an extensive editing process after they have been sold to a publishing house, but I have no idea how polished a pre-edited work is before hand. Maybe I have stories that are ready to go, or maybe I don't. And I hate not knowing.
However, in other ways, I'm proud of the growth I've accomplished. It's always hard looking at where you want to be, and wishing you were already there. But I know I can do it, if I just keep working.