Four Compelling Reasons You Shouldn’t Be Afraid to Write Crappy First Drafts

What does it take to consistently write good stuff?

How do you write so well your readers rave about it?

Can anyone learn how to do this, or do you need special talent?

You can write well – every time you write. You can connect with readers again and again. You don’t have to be a born writer. You just have to write.

Every writer wants his best work to be read. Often, there’s a lot of work involved – work that is boring, tedious, and hard. If that scares you, it’s okay.

Here are four thoughts that can allay your fears – and get you writing.

Photo Credit: Eliecer Gallegos Flickr via Compfight cc

Know that good writing is rewriting.

What does that mean?

  • It means you  write garbage first. Get some words on the page.
  • Write whatever comes to mind.
  • Don’t stop until you run out of thoughts.

Why is that important?

Because writers write.

Good writing is rewriting. Click To Tweet

Have you ever had your friends ask you,

  • “What’s your latest book project?”
  • “How many books have you sold?”
  • “How can you write all the time? That would drive me crazy.”

People that tell you writing is easy are lying. It’s hard to wring words out of your indecisive brain day after day.  A blank page is intimidating. Where do you start? What do you say? How should you say it? That’s why so many writers go for days, weeks, and even months without writing anything.

When you feel like doing anything but writing, remember this:

The first draft has to be written to be rewritten.

You’ve got to get something on paper. But what? Does it matter?

Not really.

You just need to …

Be willing to write the wrong thing.

It doesn’t matter what you write. You can change it when you edit it.

Go ahead and write that word you’re not sure about. Write that section you haven’t fully researched. Fill in the blanks with jokes if you want.

When you don’t care about being wrong, you’ll write freely. Your first draft may be a pile of manure. But there might be gold in there. The more you write, the better your first draft will be.

You have to write the first draft to rewrite it. Click To Tweet

The only way to get better is to write a lot.

A baby learns to walk after falling down a hundred times. He doesn’t let failure stop him. He gets up, forgets the past, and puts one foot in front of the other.

Soon he walks freely and naturally.

Then he discovers he can run.

Your writing will get better and come easier. You just have to do the work. It won’t be easy, but I guarantee if you stick with it, it’ll be worth it.

Will you be tempted to give up? Oh, yes. Will you feel like you’ve hit a wall and can’t move forward? Absolutely. When that happens, commit to write for one more day. Then another. And another. Your persistence will break down that wall – brick by brick – and you’ll be free.

Remember growth is a process.

Your growth may feel like watching your own baby grow. From one day to another, it’s hard to see. But after a month or a year, the change is startling.

Press on. Write garbage. Do it every day. You’ll be writing. You’ll be productive. And when you’re ready to edit, you may find treasures you never expected!

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