Write, She Said

Perfection.

Martha Stewart.

The two go hand & hand, right? I’ll be seeing her speak in about a month. I am quite curious what she has to say about blogging.

This will probably not shock you, but I am a (recovering?) perfectionist.

A perfectionist is not necessarily someone who does everything a la parfait like Martha, I have learned. A perfectionist can become paralyzed, never writing at all for fear of not amazing the whole room.

That’s why I signed up for NaBloPoMo this month. Not all of my posts will be gold. Most of the time I’ll just be spitballing. I’m paraphrasing Simon Pegg.

That’s OK. (?)

Is it?

I will never sing like Feist.

I will never look like Amber Heard.

I will never write like Jane Austen.

But I can WORK on my writing, polishing each line like a semi-precious stone. Most will not be worth than the turquoise medallions on my grandfather’s bolo ties. But his bookstore was called the “Gem Book Trading Company.” Because he believed that each book he housed there was a gem, whether a bright chunky piece of amber (like his beloved Louis L’Amour) or a bright, multi-facted emerald, like his venerated Faulkner.

I once met saw Elizabeth George speak. I asked her what she would recommend an aspiring writer do.

“Write”, she said.

She then relayed the story of a man she worked with on a mystery writing cruise. He was not a great crafter of prose by any means, but he was incredibly persistent. He reappeared at this particular cruise each year. Every time he brought an improved manuscript, until finally he brought a published copy of his novel. George was shocked. She had taught much more talented writers over the years, and they had never been published. But he had worked hard, like a miner, until he at least achieved his goal of unearthing and polishing a gem.

“Write,” she said. “Just, write.”

And so, I write.

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7 Comments

Filed under Blogging

7 responses to “Write, She Said

  1. Love it! So true and important to “Just, write.” So glad to be sharing this NaBloPoMo experience with you.

  2. It IS okay. That’s something I’ve struggled with for a long time as well, that not everything is going to be perfect, and it’s okay. I still struggle with it, every day.

    I can’t wait to hear about Martha Stewart!

  3. This is the best advice ever. Seriously, I never use to think I could write anything other than school papers. Now, I’ve proven that false. More importantly, I’ve discovered that I love it.

  4. I love Elizabeth George and that is awesome advice.

  5. Awesome advice! I have always thought of myself as a horrible writer, but the more I write the better I feel about it. It still may not be very good, but it’s better than it used to be.

  6. Love this. I am also a perfectionist (and nowhere near being able to claim I’m in recovery), and I struggle with the trying vs the finished, perfect product. I think NaBloPoMo is a great exercise in this very thing. I may even be brave enough to try it one day (month?)!

  7. Practice makes…perfect. ; ) Great advice. To be a writer, you have to write!

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