So there is this meme that I have come across several times and it cracks me up every time I see it. I can’t help but laugh, because it perfectly sums up all of my writer feels.
It’s the scene where Rapunzel has just ‘escaped’ the tower in Tangled and she is running through her roller coaster of emotions, but instead of worrying about disappointing her mother, she has been suddenly struck by a massive wave of the writer feels.
See where I’m going with this?
Well, of all the Disney princesses, this meme has singlehandedly made me relate to Rapunzel the most. And I blame the writer feels.
There are some days when I am writing and like, ‘Holy crap! This is amazing! Did this really come from my head?’ Then there’s days when I’m like, ‘Wow, did that REALLY come from my head?’
Apparently, I am not alone.
Neither are you.
Turns out, sometimes, part of being a writer is being convinced that your writing sucks. It’s perfectly normal. And perfectly ok. Why? I’ll give you three reasons.
1. It Makes Your Writing Better – Let’s be honest. If you didn’t think your writing- or at least part of it- was awful, would you bother proofing or editing it? I didn’t think so. It would seem redundant. Why fix something that isn’t broken? BUT, if your writing is terrible and awful and OH MY GOD WHY would I let people read that- then you will put in the time to revise and reconsider your words to make them the best they can possibly be. Even if all you do is make minor changes (or, if you’re like me, CHANGE EVERYTHING-KILL IT! KILL IT WITH FIRE!), those changes will still improve your writing.
2. It Makes YOU Better – By extension of my first point, if you are truly passionate about your writing but you think that it’s awful, you will want to learn how to be better. Whether it’s
obsessively following writing podcasts, reading other writer’s blogs, buying books on writing, or writing ALL THE WORDS you can to practice and hone your craft, that nagging feeling that your writing is poop on a plate will strengthen your resolve to strengthen your skill set, and no matter WHO you are, THAT’S A GOOD THING.
3. It keeps you humble. As much as the ‘I’m a terrible writer feels’ can, well, feel, they help to keep you grounded. Because no one likes a know-it-all. And nowadays especially (thank you Social Media), being a writer means you need to network, network, network. Which means people can’t hate you. Occasional bouts of ‘I suck’ keep the ego-beast away and help you be relatable. WIN.
What I’m trying to say is, there are days that you are going to feel like the worst writer on the planet. Then there will be days that you are amazed at your sheer brilliance and wit and prose, and, and, and. And then there will be days where you experience both of those emotions and every emotion in between.
That’s what writing is about.
The good days encourage you to persevere, the bad days challenge you to be better.
What’s important is that you never give up.
The world needs your story. The world needs your words. You were given your passion for writing for a reason, don’t lock it up.