Wednesday, July 6, 2011

So When Do You Know You Know?

I've been at this writing thing for a while now, not that I've published anything yet. (That's another blog.)
But I remember that when I started seriously, this writing thing seemed hidden behind an impenetrable wall of rules, a million do's and don'ts. And to be honest, I know that I'll never really know it all, and if I do, writing would become a very boring "job" indeed.

But last night my 15 year old asked me a question about writing, about how to organize the writing within the chapter, and what kind questions to ask to guide the story along the right path.

And as I talked with her, I realized that even though I thought that because I haven't published yet, and thought I hadn't learned enough, I had learned enough to explain those rules to my daughter.

It gave me a confidence to realized that the obstacles I face right now are of two kinds: those of my own making, like not finishing novels, or ones I have no control over, like what agents or publishers think of my work.

So when do you know that you know enough? That you you're to the point that it's just your personal bugaboos that you have to overcome?


  1. I think as long as you keep on learning you'll someday gain the confidence in your skills to put yourself (and your writing) out there and strive to get it published. In the meantime, acquire as much knowledge as you can and improve your craft; if you do, you're going to get there!

  2. For me it's always been my personal bugaboos that I have to overcome. One thing I'm learning about myself is that I feel like I have to be certified by someone else to feel like I know anything. This is in contrast to my husband who watches someone do something once then he just dives in and learns a new skill right away. I need to stop thinking that I have to have a doctorate in something to try it. That goes with my writing as well. If I let myself I would never do, I would always sit on the sidelines waiting to learn more. I think the trick is to never stop doing even as you are learning and never be afraid to jump in with both feet and just go for it. The best thing I ever did for writing was query agents before my story was ready. Mostly because it took away the scariness of querying and it made me feel like a veteran to have my own stack of rejections. I want to always be open to learning more, but I want to be fearless in my writing. I think there is a balance in there somewhere.



Related Posts with Thumbnails