Monday, June 20, 2011

Perfectionism: Fear in Writing

Dave Gaughran posted an interesting piece on the kindleboards and on his blog about a self-publishing myth.  In it, he brought up a key piece of negativity that I too sense in discussions with others.  That is, that most self-published work is crap and therefore it somehow taints the good self-published work (and perhaps even non-self-published work).  He wrote, "[T]his idea of poor self-published work tainting the rest is clearly rubbish. Will my perfectly formatted e-book become corrupted by sharing a virtual bookshelf with unprofessional self-publishers? Will the colours bleed from my cover? Will I begin to dangle my modifiers? Will my characters turn to cardboard?"

The article goes on to make more good points, but that is an important point in another way.  After all, it is useful to adopt this point of view towards one's work in general.  I'm a perfectionist, and I fear letting out less than perfect work.  I fear that no matter how long I work on a work, it will never be perfect--which is a truth, actually.  But I can't let that fear prevent me from producing and publishing my writing.

The main, weird point I drew from this article is this:  an imperfect story will not make another story worse.  That is something worth remembering when you write.  And in doing so, another arresting fear is released.

(This blog post took me 15 minutes to write, from conception to posting.)


Post a Comment