Show Me A Perfect Writer & I’ll Show You A Unicorn

 

When I speak with writers about what’s getting in the way of them finishing their projects I tend to hear the following reasons:

  • Lack of time
  • Lack of motivation
  • Lack of momentum

And then I hear … I’m worried that it’s not good enough – so I just keep fiddling with it.

Just so you know – the endless fiddling isn’t you improving your work, it’s fear thwarting your writing goal.   And you know I’m right…

Here’s the thing – if you’re waiting for your work to be perfect you’re going to be waiting for a very long time.   If you can’t share your work until it’s perfect you’re going to be waiting a very long time.  Sure, you’ll be safe from potential criticism and rejection but your work is never going to see the light of day.

And I don’t know many people who write for the audience in their bottom drawer.

So if perfectionism (aka cunningly desired fear) is getting in the way of your productive writing – here are some thoughts to consider.

  • Writing is a messy, imperfect process – so why do you expect your work to be perfect?
  • You’re going to get it wrong at some point – especially if you’re a new-ish writer. You’re going to get things wrong even if you’re not!
  • Getting critical feedback is invaluable to you as a writer and will help you improve your craft. You can’t get that if you don’t finish your work.
  • There’s no prize for being perfect.  Seriously – zero prizes!
  • Perfectionism is stopping you finishing because after you’ve finished the next step is invariably putting your work out into the world.  Never finishing means never having to show anyone your work = your work is NEVER seen.  And that’s sad.
  • Everybody wants their work to be amazing! Plenty of successful and talented writers struggle with getting their work bang on.  The difference is they don’t let that worry stop them finishing their project.  They finish, then they may go through the agonies of self-doubt and then they rewrite.
  • What’s worse?  Feelings of self-loathing because you never finish your story OR  someone (directly or indirectly) telling you your story needs more work?
  • What’s the worse thing that could happen if you get negative feedback?  And just so you know – everybody gets negative feedback at some point.  And getting it helps you build creative resilience.

Want some support to keep your project on track?  Check out my Writing Room page.

©Kathryn Burnett 2018 – For reprinting permission please get in touch via my contact page.

 

 

 

 

 



The Best Dumb Questions About Screenwriting

Every time I teach my Beginner’s Guide to Screenwriting workshop I get asked these same questions and they’re almost always prefaced by the statement “this is probably a dumb question but…”

However, if no-one has told you about this stuff, how would you know? And I think knowing what you don’t know is actually kinda smart.

So let’s jump in and clarify some basics…

Continue reading The Best Dumb Questions About Screenwriting



What Writers Can Learn From Donald Trump

Like many people around the world, I’ve been watching the vaudeville show that constitutes the Trump presidency with incredulity and growing disquiet.  Given his kneejerk responses to just about everything and I think the world can be forgiven for being slightly nervous.

But where’s this worrying going to get us? In truth it will get us about as far as me posting my outrage on Facebook i.e. absolutely nowhere.

All I can really do is try to get something positive from the situation. So here it is – here are five things writers can learn from watching this hot mess unfold…

Continue reading What Writers Can Learn From Donald Trump