I have a confession.  I have started this post 12 different times.  I have proof.  I started keeping track and we’re on Try #12.  Look, I even took its picture.

tries

For Try #12, I’m establishing some rules for completion.  I cannot have a Try #13.  Try #12 has to be The One.

So, here are the rules for Try #12:

  1.  I cannot erase.  I’m second guessing every thought I write and then erasing it.  This is not helpful.  This is Backspace Key abuse.   I recently read something that Jen Hatmaker, one of my writing heroes, quoted from Jodi Picoult.  “I can edit a bad page.  I can’t edit a blank page.”  So no more erasing.  Pardon me for the rambles, the terrible ideas, or any other writing catastrophes I’m about to commit, but it’s time to quit quitting.  And let’s not pigeonhole this piece of advice into just the act of writing.  You can’t edit anything you don’t try start.  Sometimes the bravest, hardest, scariest thing we do is start.  And in a close second for being Brave/Hard/Scary is to keep trying when it gets difficult.
  2.  I may strike through to remove or adjust a thought.
  3. I’m giving myself a time limit.  It’s already 12:04, Central Time, and I’m about 2 hours later than I like to be for a Sunday morning post.  Not to mention that I had an extra hour today.  So Rule #3 is that I will be done by 1:15 1:30.
  4. No more Facebook or refrigerator breaks.  Sorry FB, I cannot be your friend right now.  As much as I enjoy seeing all the “Daylight Savings Time Ending” memes mixed in with the political opinions, I have to leave it alone until I’m done.
  5. No more refrigerator breaks.  I am not hungry.  I am NOT hungry.  I.am.not.hungry. I’m just procrastinating.  Or, to be completely honest, I’m just shoving food in my pie hole to soothe my self-doubt.  That is not the answer.  Facing my self-doubt is.  Here’s the thing.  I have a gigantic case of “You’re-Not-Good-Enough-Nobody-Likes-Your-Writing-You-Should-Just-Quit-itis” right now.  I’ve noticed that in the last few posts, the reaction hasn’t been the same.  There hasn’t been the same amount of comments.  My views have gone from about 200 per post to 40.  So I took the disappointment from the last few weeks and So the Judge takes that information and uses it as a weapon to tell me to quit.  And when I don’t quit, he doesn’t either.  He makes me doubt every word I write.  “That’s not good enough.  You sound whiny.  No one cares.  You’re going to push even more people away if you write that.”  All those words are whispered in my ear as I write.  So I try to deflect them by eating. So far it’s been a Reese’s cup, miniature Almond Joy, a snack bag of Cheetos, a snack bag of Chili Cheese Fritos, and 5 6 7 8 strawberry bonbons.    Here’s the proof:writingfood
  6. Refer to Rule #1 regarding Rule #5.  Do not erase it even though it’s long and rambles.  Leave it.  Embrace the imperfections.
  7. Share your plan to improve your blog.  Here’s the next thing.  Everyone has something they want to improve on b.  The self-doubt isn’t going to go away unless there is a plan to get rid of it.  A solid plan.  A plan that has parameters and guidelines attached.  An action plan.  I wrote it down before I started Try #12.  Here it is:writingrules
  8. Invite your readers to share their thoughts with you.  Ask them to share their goals for themselves with you.  Offer the solemn promise to support and encourage them as they pursue their dreams.
  9. Ask your readers to share their thoughts with you and give feedback about your writing.  Maybe there is a disconnect that happened.  Maybe there is something that is missing or gone.  Be brave enough to ask with the genuine promise to hear their feedback and use it.  Thank them for their gift of reading and offering suggestions.  The only thing worse than not writing, is not having an audience.

 

Thank you for reading my crazy ramblings in this post.  I truly appreciate each response, each view, each share.

And to Try #13, sorry, NOT SORRY, you will never be.

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