Wednesday, July 4, 2012

The Wall

Every writer experiences a moment where the words won't come. I'm in that place right now. An interesting thing I learned about myself after staring at my WiPs is that I am not a closer. I don't know if it is because I'm a pantster (despite the fact that I try to outline where I'm going), because I get lost or distracted, or if I am scared to type The End.

I'm not good at endings. Not in writing and not in real life. They scare me. I don't let go easily. So I wonder if that bleeds into my writing. I wonder if that holds me back from crossing the finish line with my unfinished manuscripts. Is that why I approach the final stretch and decide it sucks?

My other fatal flaw is perfectionism. I can't get past the fact that no matter how hard I try and how many times I edit and rewrite, I will still need to make changes. Assuming my book is snapped up and an editor looks at it, I know there will be things I missed and I will smack my forehead at not seeing it. This is no reflection on the process and I love my crop-wielding editor to bits but my desire to please, my need to measure up and be good enough clouds my brain.

This is not my way of coming down on myself or beating myself up. I'm just stating what has become obvious to me - this is an area I need to work on. Like now. I'm a good writer, a good storyteller, but I need discipline, some confidence.

So, like vines climbing a brick wall, I will reach for the top and get to the other side. And then I need to let go.


  1. I seriously need a like button!

    Don't stress about it. We all know about the wall. The only thing we can't figure out is to not hit our head against it from time to time.

    I don't think any of us is confident in our endings. But see, that's the thing. You hate it, your readers love it and vice verse. You never know what the response will be...

    ...but that won't stop us from writing! So pick up that pen or tap away on that keyboard! Just go with it!

    (...I should follow my own advice, sigh, I don't have any inspiration at all at the moment...)

    1. The funny thing is after I wrote this post, I had a breakthrough. Maybe I should whine more often. lol

      I just edited a short story last night and did smack my head against the wall for the bonehead mistakes I made. Even though the piece was clean, I don't like sending anything in that isn't "perfect". Of course there is no such thing and I shouldn't find myself lacking simply because I need to edit, but that perfectionist doesn't want to make mistakes.

      Ugh! That could be a whole other post.

      Thanks for commenting Jean-Marie


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