Saturday, January 2, 2016

Sick of Resolutions? Try a New Year's Adage! #writing #inspiration

I don't know about you guys but for me, New Year's resolutions lost their appeal years ago. I never made small goals. I picked the big, life changing ones.

Get out of debt.
Find a new job with a better boss.
Run a marathon.

The problem was life never followed my plans, and I got sick of the sense of failure.

This year, I'm trying something new: a saying instead of a goal.

Doing research for my last release, Blue, gave me the opportunity to strengthen a few connections in the music industry. Aside from learning more about creating music, I learned songwriters and novelists have a lot in common. They both face the challenge of getting their work noticed among a sea of submissions, and they're both prone to anxiety over the masterpieces they create.

Sound familiar? 

I don't know about you guys, but with every book I worry I'm fooling myself when I think it's worth publishing. It turns out songwriters have the same fear.

photo credit: Reeboks via photopin (license)

Several months ago, a group of us were sitting around discussing our common woes and someone tossed out a comment that has become my adage for 2016.

"All creative people worry their stuff is garbage. It's as much a part of being an artist as wondering how the hell some hack's obvious piece of crap made it to the top of the charts."

In other words, it's okay to worry. Fear is a crucial part of the creative process that will push you to work harder. Let it do its job and then put it aside. Some people will love your work. Some will hate it. That's the way it goes. If you're afraid of the public's reaction, congratulations. It means you're a true artist with a passion for your work. 

The only time you need to let fear slow you down is if you start using the 'hack's obvious piece of crap' as an excuse to publish things you know aren't as good as they could be. If 'good enough' ever creeps into your editing process you should probably pay more attention to the fear.

One ultimatum cost him everything.

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