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The damnable inner editor

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earthshoes



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 213
Location: SW Missouri
The damnable inner editor  Reply with quote  

How do you shut him/her up?

I'm at just past 26,000 wds and am really struggling with self-doubt. You know those days (sometimes several on end) of looking at everything you wrote and just knowing it's all crap so why bother?

I know this isn't unique and I've been through it before (in fact, it haunted me for a good part of the last book). I'd just like to hear how everyone else gets around periods like this.

I'm not quite paralyzed, but it sure is slowing up the process.
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. . .once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand.
(The Velveteen Rabbit)

Post Tue Oct 26, 2004 5:40 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail AIM Address Yahoo Messenger
Ferrit Leggings



Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Posts: 2658
 Reply with quote  

Do what I do, smoke. AHHHH Feel the nicotine in your lungs, it is refreshing isnít it? Then I walk around a while and then I moan at people. Not just regular moaning, I mean real moaning and not the good kind of moaning. I would say the other word for moaning about something but I donít want to offend you. After moaning I walk around again and moan some more. My latest complaint was that all was not right with the world because the Red Sox are winning. Before that I complained that it was too cold and before that it was too hot. And then I sat down and wrote and smoked and walked and moaned. But the walking around did the best to help me. Walking around a story and letting it flow through my brain to see if I like it because I am my worst critic helps the most. And of course the smoking, donít forget the smoking but above all stay away from television it is your worst enemy so is moaning but it feels so good to complain sometimes just donít do it too often. You donít want to be an earache.

Ta,
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Post Tue Oct 26, 2004 5:58 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
Ferrit Leggings



Joined: 29 Mar 2004
Posts: 2658
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I mean earache in the nicest possible way. I am doing my best not to offend. It is hard you know. I just obliterated 20 pages because of the inner editor. So I do know what you are going through. Walk around is all I am saying. You will know weather it is good or not.

Ta,
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I feel the same way about disco as I do about herpes. -HST

Post Tue Oct 26, 2004 6:07 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
chris
Site Admin


Joined: 02 Mar 2004
Posts: 3833
Location: People Republic of Northern California
 Reply with quote  

A few weeks ago I posted a link to some audio files of interviews with writers. One of the ones I listened to, in fact the one that made me decide to post the link, was Garrison Keillor on writer's block. In short, he said that writers get blocked because they expect too much, and because he never has high expectations for his work, he never gets blocked.

I'd say that rings about as true as any explanation I've ever heard. And considering that I've been stuck for about a week, I need to heed my own advice. The editor in your head will have plenty to do after you finish the first draft. For now, plod on, write crap. Set out to write crap. Luxuriate in crap. Fix it later.

Okay, now I have to go write some crap myownself.

Post Tue Oct 26, 2004 8:01 pm   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
earthshoes



Joined: 17 Jun 2004
Posts: 213
Location: SW Missouri
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Thanks FL and AG. Went for a walk, sat down and wrote crap. I think I run into trouble when I start comparing my own work to that of authors I admire or I have a friend come through who writes too and I recognize her stuff as better than mine and I fixate on that instead of doing what I do best.

AG--saw your blog. I really don't want to get into the politics of the situation, but I do want to express my thanks for your challenges and encouragements over the last few months. You've probably helped more than you know. Sometimes hearing that successful writers have some of the same issues that we unknowns have is help enough, but your advice has been solid, real and no nonsense (well, a little nonsense, maybe, but it was constructive all the same). I wish I could say something that was as useful to you as what you've offered myself and others.

I'd noticed you were a little quiet and figured you were off writing (or signing books). My suspicion is that you'll recover with a vengeance, but I realize that's easy for me to say.

And, for the record, as much as we enjoy your sense of humor here, I don't think any of us expect you to be "on" all the time.

all the best,
mary
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. . .once you are Real you can't be ugly, except to people who don't understand.
(The Velveteen Rabbit)

Post Wed Oct 27, 2004 10:33 am   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail AIM Address Yahoo Messenger
Tal



Joined: 21 May 2004
Posts: 1692
Location: Not Massachusetts
 Reply with quote  

earthshoes wrote:
I think I run into trouble when I start comparing my own work to that of authors I admire or I have a friend come through who writes too and I recognize her stuff as better than mine and I fixate on that instead of doing what I do best.


There is the crux of the matter. I frequently think that my writing sucks in comparison to my best friend's writing. He says the opposite. Smile

Screw it. Just write. =)
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Post Wed Oct 27, 2004 10:45 am   View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
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