I have this great idea, but…
a. I don’t know where to start.
b. every time I write, it sounds bad.
c. my writing sucks.
d. I’m too scared.
Here is why these excuses don’t work:
a. You won’t know where to start unless you do.
b. You won’t get any better unless you actually write.
c. See above statement.
d. The only way to conquer your fear is by facing it.
I’ve heard these excuses a lot from “writers.” I tell them about what I’m working on, and then I ask, “So, what’s your latest work in progress?” It makes me so sad that people often respond with, “but” statements.
“But I don’t think it will sell.”
“But I haven’t plotted enough.”
“But I’m scared, scared, scared.”
“But that’s not why you should be writing.” (Seriously, write for yourself, not for others.)
“But I’ve never plotted. You don’t need to.” (This is true–plotting isn’t my forte.)
“But if you don’t jump in now, you might never!”
I promise that if you get that story written now, you’ll realize how silly all your fears were. It might be really bad; my first drafts always are. But you’ll also be pleasantly surprised. A lot of what you write will be salvageable. Some of it might be genius or become genius.
But you’ll never know if you never write. Maybe you’ll be famous someday, maybe you won’t. Maybe people will love your book, maybe they’ll hate it. But you will never know unless you write it.
I have a super secret to share with you: there is NOTHING preventing you from writing. Once you realize this, you’ll be unstoppable!
I used to always dream of writing. When I was very young, I would write whatever came to mind. Then I must have discovered that writing is something authors do, so I stopped. I was fortunate enough to realize that nothing was preventing me from writing only a few years later. I joined an online game, and on the game there was a forum where people would post their stories.
Then it hit me: I can do this, too! So I did. My first story was Battle Camp: the Rebellion. It totaled 13,000 words of vomit-worthy literature. Now, though, I’ve done a complete rewrite, and I love it. This story has become my life, and I shudder to think how I would be different without this story.