Don’t think. Act. We can always revise and revisit once we’ve acted. But we can accomplish nothing until we act. - Steven Pressfield
I want to instill confidence in you that a bad first draft doesn't mean you're a bad writer. In fact, it's a necessary part of the writing process.
I also want to break the opposite side of that coin, which is that your first draft is the perfect version of what you’ve written.
So let me put it bluntly: your first draft sucks, I don’t care who you are.
Embrace that. Right here, right now.
I’m part of a group of friends who get together for a monthly dinner out. Sometimes, those dinners are at fancy-shmancy restaurants that we save up for, sometimes they’re at diners, and sometimes they’re at our houses.
In the group are 4 couples, and of each couple, the wife is the one who loves to cook. (Not saying that’s always the case, it just happens to be so in my group of friends.)
From watching these women cook, and hearing their stories about where their recipes came from, I’ve come to realize that there are 3 types of recipe people.
1. Follow the recipe to the T, and never stray, ever.
2. Follow the recipe to the T the first time, and then improvise the second time, based on their taste.
3. Read through it, use most of the same ingredients, but adapt most of it to what they like and know about cooking.
I’ve also come to realize that this is the exact same for writers.
I have a thing for gross metaphors. It’s just how I roll.
If you ask my clients, I always tend to have a way of comparing writing to something a little bit disgusting.
For example, I always say that most writers are like an ouroboros.
If you’re unfamiliar with the ouroboros, it’s a snake that’s eating it’s own tail. (That’s not the gross part.)
Think about it. A lot of aspiring writers are circling, and even though the circling looks different for each of them… they’re all circling.
When there is a creative lapse in a writer’s work, I reminded myself, a writer can be very creative in finding ways to escape it.
Gay Talese, A Writer’s Life
I have had many times in my life when I am so excited about a book that I'm working on, but I just can't seem to get through a certain part of it.
I call it getting ultra stuck.
I normally compare writing to blowing your nose. I say you have to blow, blow, and blow until all the gunk is out.
But let's face it, sometimes, that nose is clogged no matter what you do.
Which means I would do my favorite thing to do when I shouldn't been writing...
You guessed it… ANYTHING THAT WASN’T WRITING!