We held our last meeting for the year on November 15, and it was encouraging to hear about the progress of everyone’s book-length project: some are nearing the end of the first draft, some have finished their first draft, and some have finished later drafts. Some have publishers already interested in their work, and a number have had stories win competitions or get published. A few have had plays performed.
One of the most common and recurrent issues for our group seems to be procrastination—family, housework, the need for food, the lure of the internet, all draw us away from our WIP’s. We discussed ways to help start and keep a writing habit, and how to keep our motivation going, and with the New Year and its resolutions just around the corner, here are a few articles with helpful tips:
We also discussed good books for writers. Natalie Goldberg’s ‘Writing Down the Bones’ and Anne Lamott’s ‘Bird By Bird’ are both worth reading, for their craft tips as well as their general tips on the writing life and philosophies.
Since our meeting I’ve also read Liz Gilbert’s ‘Big Magic’, and I’d have no hesitation adding that to the list, too, as I found it inspiring. Perhaps the biggest message I took from this book was to just create without fear or judgement. If that’s what you want to do, just do it.
Here are a few more quotes from the book:
‘Just say what you want to say, then, and say it with all your heart. Share whatever you are driven to share.’
‘So many of us believe in perfection, which ruins everything else, because the perfect is not only the enemy of the good; it’s also the enemy of the realistic, the possible, and the fun.’
‘Bring forth what is within you, then, whether it succeeds or fails.’
‘Do it whether the final product is crap or gold. Do it whether the critics love you or hate you—or whether the critics have never heard of you and perhaps never will hear of you. Do it whether people get it or don’t get it.’
‘It doesn’t have to be perfect, and you don’t have to be Plato.’
‘Done is better than good.’
So, let’s all go forth and create, and, for the moment at least, not worry about how good our creation is or what others will think of it. Let’s just have fun!
But please let me know if you do have success, so we can all celebrate!
See you when we start again on February 21st, 2016. Here’s to 2016 being a real kick-ass creative year!
PS. I’ll compile a list of good books for writers, so please add any you’d recommend in the comments.