I write for me, not for the reader. Maybe that is my mistake? I am focused on the catharsis that happens when I write to release my emotions, not the result of the work I am writing. Readers like results, along with feeling the catharsis. So, I am reviewing my process to become a better writer. Don’t know if it will work or not, as there are a lot of kinks to work out.
I know the why of my writing, just not the how of it. The words are always just THERE when I need them. The stories, poems, journals, they just flow. Each time I try to control them, it ends badly. I start overanalyzing and editing before the work is complete, to the point where the cuts are too deep and the story is lost. Or, I listen to grammar checkers or readers that don’t take into account style and grace. I beat myself up constantly even before it gets to post. I have to remember that writing is an art, we need to have a “spirit line” (mistakes that make it art). But I hardly ever do.
Because I am so critical of the works I read, I have a hard time not being even more critical with the works I write. My prime example: these journal entries, which I started just to get me writing more than poems. I struggle to prove a point or say something meaningful or be there for someone. In doing so, I want perfection, but I am not perfect. I need to remember why I write these entries: to write more than poems, not to attain perfection. I have a hard time remembering that, too.
I guess what I am trying to say is that I am going to mess up, and I have to allow myself to mess up and learn from the resulting disaster. Figure out the “how to do it better” part after it is done and stop thinking that everything will go so horribly wrong I will never recover before I even give it a chance to fail.
I’m going to add this to my goals for 2020: stop beating myself up so much. Hopefully, it will be a goal I can attain? I guess I will keep you posted.
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