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The worst pep talk ever.

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jay.aitch.gee View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote jay.aitch.gee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 3:12pm
I loved this pep talk. I really appreciate it when people de-romanticize the work of writing. I wasted years not writing things because it didn't feel like this rewarding, magical process. Tbh, I wish someone had come along much sooner in my life to tell me that it's normal for writing to suck and be difficult. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote SassHonore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 3:18pm
Originally posted by jay.aitch.gee jay.aitch.gee wrote:

I loved this pep talk. I really appreciate it when people de-romanticize the work of writing. I wasted years not writing things because it didn't feel like this rewarding, magical process. Tbh, I wish someone had come along much sooner in my life to tell me that it's normal for writing to suck and be difficult. 

Ooooooof, yes, this is me. "Why is this so hard?!? [Author I love] makes it look so easy! I guess I'm not really meant to do this." 

Then I got on Twitter and followed a bunch of authors and was like, ".............................................Oh." 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zelda Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 4:00pm
Originally posted by SassHonore SassHonore wrote:

Originally posted by jay.aitch.gee jay.aitch.gee wrote:

I loved this pep talk. I really appreciate it when people de-romanticize the work of writing. I wasted years not writing things because it didn't feel like this rewarding, magical process. Tbh, I wish someone had come along much sooner in my life to tell me that it's normal for writing to suck and be difficult. 

Ooooooof, yes, this is me. "Why is this so hard?!? [Author I love] makes it look so easy! I guess I'm not really meant to do this." 

Then I got on Twitter and followed a bunch of authors and was like, ".............................................Oh." 

HA HA! I never use Twitter, so I'm not sure what you discovered there. Sounds interesting, though! 

When I first got into writing, I quit reading a lot of books because I felt threatened by how well written they were. (Mainly from a sentence standpoint, like the technical writing.) I had to, like, get myself to think, "I can do that too," instead of just thinking, "This person's better than me! Noooo, I mean, this person's better than I!" Or whatever. Ouch

It's an interesting concept that writing is romanticized. I hadn't realized that. I guess it still seems romanticized in my brain? Like this one time when I was a kid, a music teacher at church explained to us how to read music, and I got the idea in my head that I could go home, get my mom's piano books, put them on the piano, and learn to play them based on what the teacher had explained to us. I don't remember how successful I was that night, but I did take piano for years and vowed to learn certain pieces, and I did learn them. The Moonlight Sonata, Chopin's Raindrop Prelude, etc. I'm not a great pianist. (My brain works very slowly and I have poor coordination.) But the magic of learning the Moonlight Sonata is one of my favorite memories--how I read through the notes again and again and found the chords with my fingers. The novelty of its melancholy didn't fade for years, until way after I'd played it for memory a million times. 

I guess I'm just saying if the romance is dead, maybe we need to rediscover it somehow. You know, keep it alive. Not embrace its absense. < x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_off">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_highcontrast">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_highcontrast_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_grayscale">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_grayscale_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert_grayscale">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_yellow_on_black">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_yellow_on_black_back">
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote GGreen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 4:30pm
Originally posted by Zelda Zelda wrote:

Originally posted by SassHonore SassHonore wrote:

Originally posted by jay.aitch.gee jay.aitch.gee wrote:

I loved this pep talk. I really appreciate it when people de-romanticize the work of writing. I wasted years not writing things because it didn't feel like this rewarding, magical process. Tbh, I wish someone had come along much sooner in my life to tell me that it's normal for writing to suck and be difficult. 

Ooooooof, yes, this is me. "Why is this so hard?!? [Author I love] makes it look so easy! I guess I'm not really meant to do this." 

Then I got on Twitter and followed a bunch of authors and was like, ".............................................Oh." 

HA HA! I never use Twitter, so I'm not sure what you discovered there. Sounds interesting, though! 

When I first got into writing, I quit reading a lot of books because I felt threatened by how well written they were. (Mainly from a sentence standpoint, like the technical writing.) I had to, like, get myself to think, "I can do that too," instead of just thinking, "This person's better than me! Noooo, I mean, this person's better than I!" Or whatever. Ouch

It's an interesting concept that writing is romanticized. I hadn't realized that. I guess it still seems romanticized in my brain? Like this one time when I was a kid, a music teacher at church explained to us how to read music, and I got the idea in my head that I could go home, get my mom's piano books, put them on the piano, and learn to play them based on what the teacher had explained to us. I don't remember how successful I was that night, but I did take piano for years and vowed to learn certain pieces, and I did learn them. The Moonlight Sonata, Chopin's Raindrop Prelude, etc. I'm not a great pianist. (My brain works very slowly and I have poor coordination.) But the magic of learning the Moonlight Sonata is one of my favorite memories--how I read through the notes again and again and found the chords with my fingers. The novelty of its melancholy didn't fade for years, until way after I'd played it for memory a million times. 

I guess I'm just saying if the romance is dead, maybe we need to rediscover it somehow. You know, keep it alive. Not embrace its absense. < x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_off">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_highcontrast">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_highcontrast_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_grayscale">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_grayscale_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert_back">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_invert_grayscale">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_yellow_on_black">< x="0" y="0" width="99999" height="99999" id="hc_extension_yellow_on_black_back">
I think that people also romanticise the pain of writing. The suffering artist. It plays both ways.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote T.E. Bradford Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 5:01pm
Originally posted by Zelda Zelda wrote:

What do you guys think of this pep talk? It's for week 2 of NaNoWriMo. Do you all agree with it? Disagree? I think it's horrible. It seemed very negative to me and gloom-and-doom. 

I pretty much stopped after I read the first sentence, because the argument basis doesn't apply to me. I can see why you'd feel it was negative. Some may not, as evidenced by some of the other responses. But I've learned that for my own peace-of-mind, if it doesn't resonate with me personally, just move on. :)


Edited by T.E. Bradford - 13 Nov 2018 at 5:04pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Zelda Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 5:29pm
Originally posted by GGreen GGreen wrote:

I think that people also romanticise the pain of writing. The suffering artist. It plays both ways.

Shocked That makes sense! She's trying to glorify her suffering as a published writer! I see it now!! 
 
Originally posted by T.E. Bradford T.E. Bradford wrote:


I pretty much stopped after I read the first sentence, because the argument basis doesn't apply to me. I can see why you'd feel it was negative. Some may not, as evidenced by some of the other responses. But I've learned that for my own peace-of-mind, if it doesn't resonate with me personally, just move on. :)

Good thinking! The first sentence was a doozy, and it didn't get better from there. 
  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote jennifer.quail Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 13 Nov 2018 at 7:07pm
Well, yeah, if you want to do this for real, it's work. It's a job. I don't know anyone who makes a living at writing who doesn't view it as going to work. It's not a terrible job, but you have to treat it as one. (Even artists treat their work as work, not something they do for fun.) 

Beats nine to five, though, at least when you get paid! 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote GGreen Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2018 at 3:17am
Originally posted by jennifer.quail jennifer.quail wrote:

Well, yeah, if you want to do this for real, it's work. It's a job. I don't know anyone who makes a living at writing who doesn't view it as going to work. It's not a terrible job, but you have to treat it as one. (Even artists treat their work as work, not something they do for fun.) 

Beats nine to five, though, at least when you get paid! 
The capitalist system of work has such a hold over how we see our lives. This is creation, we are creating something from nothing. Capitalism doesn't like that. It wants us to think we must exchange labour and freedom and pain for money. But I am trying really hard to change my perspective, because that's just not how writing feels to me. And when I was an academic and writing (albeit criticism, not fiction) was essentially what I did for a job, I still loved it and didn't punish myself by convincing myself if I wasn't suffering I was somehow fraudulent.
I know there are two schools of thought on this, and I am pretty firmly in the Liz Gilbert camp (although without the magical thinking).
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote thebrokegamer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2018 at 9:36am
I'm in the camp where I know there's truth in this, but it's delivered so plainly as to be less "pep talk" and more "wake up call". Like, yeah, writing is work and pain and suffering, but why dwell on it when you're trying something so ambitious already?

I dunno. The whole thing just read to me like Brave Sir Robin.

As for writing advice, the best I've heard is from Margaret Atwood: "Do back exercises. Pain is distracting."
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NoBananas Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 14 Nov 2018 at 2:01pm
Originally posted by thebrokegamer thebrokegamer wrote:

I'm in the camp where I know there's truth in this, but it's delivered so plainly as to be less "pep talk" and more "wake up call". Like, yeah, writing is work and pain and suffering, but why dwell on it when you're trying something so ambitious already?

I dunno. The whole thing just read to me like Brave Sir Robin.

As for writing advice, the best I've heard is from Margaret Atwood: "Do back exercises. Pain is distracting."

Agree. To be honest, I feel like it was a bit of a judgment on Nano-ers (i.e. calm down... don't get so excited!). To deliver that message to a group who is not exactly elevated in the writing community in the first place...ehhh. Ermm We know writing is hard. 

I don't think it sucks, though. If you don't think some part of writing is fun, you wouldn't do it. Nobody signs up for pain if they get no benefit. 
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