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Good Enough

Lost_Robin

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I've always had trouble with sharing my writing. Which is probably why I'm so hesitant to publish anything here, especially this blog post. I'm not a fan of my feelings being known, but I wanted to explain why I either publish lots of things super quickly or nothing for almost an entire month. This is also how I think, for lack of a better word.

The problem I've always had is if my work was good enough or not.

I'm always afraid that my work is terrible, and that everyone will laugh at me. I didn't really have this problem in my creative writing classes in college, mostly because I had to produce five-ten pages every week, so I didn't really have time to think about whether or not it was terrible. I was churning it out while also doing work for other classes and writing for fun, so I never had the time to stop and think if it were good enough. My classmates in workshop were more than vocal about their opinions about my work, which did not help matters. Some were nice about it, some were absolutely terrible about it.

I published fanfic a long time ago, before I started thinking about whether or not it was good enough (It wasn't. That is probably the worst writing I've ever done in my life). And then I took a break for a few years, well, more than a few years, because I knew that my writing was bad and I wanted to fix it. But, even after taking classes and doing Nano for almost six years now, I still am afraid that my work is terrible and that no one will actually enjoy it. There's this little voice that tells me that it's terrible and trash and I should just stop trying to publish because no one will ever like anything I write and it's never going to make anyone happy.

I just finished writing a chapter of Iris albicans, and part of the problem there was a big gap between the last chapter and this one was that I was terrified that everyone was going to think it was terrible. It's a bit wooden, I know, but I kept freaking out over it, thinking that it wasn't good enough and not wanting to work on it because of that. I do like the story, especially the later years, but I need to finish the first couple years to get there. I think because it's a more traditional fic than Notes, it feels more personal when I write it. I want it to be good enough, to be perfect. But some part of me knows that it can't be perfect, so I just need to make it good enough.

It's a self-confidence thing, I know, but I still freeze up every single time I start formatting something for publishing, not sure if it's going to be good enough or if I'm just deluding myself into thinking it's good enough when it's trash.

I need to remember that it's my trash. I made it, and, if I think it's good enough, then it is.

It's hard to find the line between good enough and not, but I'm trying to get better about that. It's still hard to decide something's ready for publishing, but I need to trust my gut.

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Noelle Zingarella

Posted

This is something that I struggle with myself, and I would venture to say that many many authors also struggle with. I'm reading a 17th century book by Robert Burton right now, and I was struck the other day by a passage in which Burton goes on and on about how he does NOT apologize for the way he wrote his book, and if you don't like it, go read something else. That kind of self-confidence impressed me, and it's an attitude I want to try to adopt with my own writing. Yes, we want to keep striving to improve our writing, but each one of us is the only person who can write our particular story. There is value in it. 

Kudos to you for publishing! Keep it up!

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hopelesslyaddicted

Posted (edited)

^Exactly my thoughts.

I struggle with this as well, even though I've been writing fanfic/RPing on PW off and on for almost a decade. More-so PW. Heck, I struggled just to post this comment. It's something I've learned just recently, but think of it this way... if anything, write for yourself. If it's what makes you happy, great! Don't worry about what other people might think. I know most people on here are on to actually write and possibly become a published author one day, but I'm here more just for the fun of it. For something to do in my spare time.

Once you hit that submit button, all that weight is lifted and it feels great! I know it does for me. Even if there's no review, know that you've finished and PUBLISHED a story. Something that you've been wanting to tell. That's a huge accomplishment all on its own.

Keep gaining that confidence! :cheering:

Edited by hopelesslyaddicted
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MadiMalfoy

Posted

Having been writing fic for well over 7 years now, I know that I still struggle with this sometimes! Part of that, I think, is growing as a writer, and learning how your style has changed over the years along with what you're wanting to write about. I've been writing and re-writing my dramione novel for YEARS and I'm still not happy with it, but I know that I just need to sit down and finish it so I can close that chapter of my life and start writing other things. Is it good enough? Probably not, but I just have to let it be what it is. 

I'm also starting to write original fiction too now, and for this I definitely feel the "is it good enough?" a LOT more because it's all entirely coming from my brain, with no source material I can pull from if I get stuck. So it's much more up to me. 

But in all honesty, if you're asking yourself this, then that means you want to put out great stuff (which you do!!) and regardless of time between postings (which is completely arbitrary) of chapters/fics/etc it's still publishing, still being creative, and that's all we can hope for. 

Keep growing that creative spirit and confidence and keep publishing! ^_^ 

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