The original spelling might have been slightly different, but this says what I want it to say.
Sometimes, when you’ve finished a major project, or had your work published you hit a blank space. Nothing you write at that point seems to work just the way you want it to. It’s OK, but it isn’t quite right.
I suppose it is a form of writer’s block. (Memo to self: Write a blog titled ‘Ten secrets for overcoming writer’s block’.)
There are no secrets, of course. Conventional wisdom says either take a few days totally away from writing to give yourself a rest. Or write. Just write. Write anything – stream of consciousness, memories of childhood, a blog. Just write to keep the writing muscle activated and well oiled.
But when you have just finished an important piece sometimes the two sides of your mind can be in disagreement. One side says, “That was terrific – but you’ll never write anything that good/important ever again. Don’t even bother trying.”
The other side says, “That was terrific. Get back to writing immediately so you can do another piece that’s even better.” And you, poor you, are stuck in the middle of this disagreement and paralyzed by indecision.
You spend time on a celebration. you spend time marketing but sooner or later you have to get those two warring sides of yourself working together so you can move forward.
I heard the best advice on that yesterday. It goes like this – decide which inner voice is beating you up the worst and shut it up. Easier said than done, but it works with a lot of those decisions where your mind is pulling you in opposing directions.
Stop beating yourself up about mistakes you’ve made in the past and mistakes you might possibly make in the future. So what if your writing today or tomorrow isn’t all that good? So what? There’s another day and another project.
I’ve seen writers have lovely successes and then go into a complete blue funk about the possibility that maybe they were just lucky, and that particular lightning will never strike them again.
It isn’t important that you attract lightning strikes – what’s important is that you keep growing as a writer and as a person.
What’s important is that you use past experience not as a stick to hit yourself with, but as a means of growth.
What’s important is that you look to the future as a positive and not as a set up for failure.
It’s OK to feel good about yourself when someone publishes your work or tells you it helped them or ‘likes’ your blog. Feeling that sense of reward for a job well done does not put you on the road to eternal damnation.
It’s a positive, a rock in your solid foundation as a writer. Publish and be happy!