Some days, I wonder why I spend so much time writing. How can I justify spending so much time on it? Time away from all the other important things in my life…
It’s true that I LOVE writing, that I feel I simply HAVE to write. But are there readers out there who will enjoy my work?
It’s hard when you’re starting out and haven’t connected with many readers yet. It can be hard to keep the faith and keep writing. To keep believing in yourself and that people will want to read your words.
This morning I was reminded why I do this. Someone had left two comments on my Goodreads feed in response to a quote from my book ‘Lie to me’. They said:
Emily. I’m from Brasil. Never read any of your books. I almost didn’t know you. But a couple months ago, I was on Facebook and there was a quote that change my future days. “Just at that moment she glanced towards him and saw him smiling at her, his eyes lingering on her with warmth and an indefinable something else. Her heart caught in her chest” It changed me. And I’m here to say Thank YOU. My heart was caught? Yes
Just trying to express my feeling for your quote. But I can’t, it’s not just that, I fele like I spent all my life to feel it. The same thing you wrote. And I searched for it. And somehow I found it. I just don’t now what to do next. Sorry for all of this. And again. Thank you, for making me wait to see something more than special.
How wonderful to create something that has moved someone so much. I am humbled.
Don’t give up!
The first draft is just a way of capturing your first ideas – after all, we all have to start somewhere. You shouldn’t expect it to be perfectly crafted prose, ready to receive countless literary awards at the blink of an eye. It is just a beginning – a set of ideas that can be developed and enhanced.
My take home messages about this are:
- Don’t expect too much of your first draft. If you over analyse and criticize it now, it is likely you will get analysis paralysis and it will never flourish
- Let your ideas flow! Give yourself permission to write rubbish (or at least what you assume might be rubbish). Just write now and analyse it later. Chances are, some real gems will emerge during the flow. But that is a decision for later. Don’t let the ‘rational’ part of your mind hijack the creative side. Einstein puts this really well:
- If the first draft really has gone nowhere or is in a rut, then don’t delete it. Just leave it for a while, let the ideas stew. And maybe later you will feel inspired to regroup and rebuild. If not – let’s hope you have other great ideas to follow up.
I enjoyed this post by Jess Forte How to Not Panic About Your First Draft. – in fact that was what inspired me to write this post.
Think about what YOU want to achieve. Is a perfect first draft realistic? Or will you allow yourself to just get something written? If the former – good luck (you will probably need it). If the latter, you will get there I am sure. Just keep writing. And do your best to avoid the dreaded analysis paralysis.