Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Writer's Fear

Ah. I love Seth Godin's work. If you are a maker human, then you should check out his new podcast Akimbo. I just finished the 4th episode: no such thing as writers block.

For most professions there are no excuses: A plumber doesn't get plumbers block. They do the work regardless of the how they feel. But somehow creatives have made an excuse called writers block. Or just not having ideas. This is ridiculous. You must get started. You must do the work. The work consists of creating work and ideas, even if that means bad ideas. History of successful people shows us that often times we don't even know if work is good or bad. Sometimes the work we think is bad, ends up resonating with someone.

The reason we do this is because of fear. We fear having bad ideas and want to be perfect. Thus, we do nothing at all. You need something in order to iterate. You need something in order to get better. It doesn't matter if the first version is bad.

I've talked before about trigger words. Seth gives a suggestion of changing "but" to "and". "I'm in Florida but it is raining". "I'm trying to write but struggling at the moment". Instead say "I'm in Florida AND it is raining". "I'm trying to write AND I'm struggling". That way a "so" naturally fits in the end: "... so I will jot down a couple of bad ideas and write anyway". "... so I'm going to stay inside and enjoy a nice book". That puts you in control. That keeps you away from excuses.