IWSG: Confession of a Perfectionist

Insecure Writers Support Group Badge

Today’s post is part of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group. It’s a blog hop where insecure writers like myself can share our writing worries and offer each other advice and encouragement. Click here to find out more about IWSG, see a full list of participating blogs, and maybe sign up yourself.

* * *

What if journalists could travel through time? That’s the premise of my Tomorrow News Network series. T.N.N. reporter Talie Tappler and her cyborg cameraman, Mr. Cognis, cover the biggest, most earth-shattering stories in galactic history before they happen.

Sometimes their stories are literally Earth-shattering.

Talie's Violet Eyes

I’m currently preparing to relaunch this project in ebook form. Tomorrow News Network, Volume One, will include the first five short stories. Volume Two will include the next five, and so forth.

It’s important to me that I get this right. It’s really, really important to me that I get this right. And that’s been a problem.

My fear of getting this wrong, even in some minor detail, has seriously held me back. So my plan is to get over my perfectionism and take a chance, knowing that I’ll probably make some stupid mistakes along the way.

I’m relaunching Tomorrow News Network, personal fears and insecurities be damned. And if I do screw this up, I’ll call it a learning experience and try to move on. Because there’s one thing I know for certain: I won’t learn anything if I just sit here worrying about my imperfections as a writer.

19 Responses to IWSG: Confession of a Perfectionist

  1. Very well said. This is something I need to internalize myself.

    One thing that has helped me in other endeavors is to mentally accept that I will make mistakes, that it won’t be perfect, that there will be flaws. The focus is on minimizing those mistakes, doing what I can to keep them away from the maximum bad. It sounds uninspiring, but it’s emotionally a much easier target to aim for.

    Now, like you, I just need to apply it to fiction writing.

    Anyway, looking forward to reading Tomorrow News Network!

    Liked by 1 person

    • James Pailly says:

      Thanks! I’ve learned to mentally accept my mistakes in my other work too. I’m definitely not a perfectionist… unless I’m writing. And then suddenly, a whole different mentality sets in.

      Liked by 1 person

      • In some ways, people who have to make a living writing have an advantage on this, in that they have no choice but to move forward as best they can. That’s probably why Nanowrimo works for so many people. It gives you an excuse to produce something flawed since all that matters is the word count.

        Liked by 1 person

      • James Pailly says:

        I’ve never had much success with Nano, but I can totally understand why it works for some people. Maybe someday I’ll give it another try.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Nano failed miserably for me the first time I tried it, although I have to admit that initial attempt was somewhat halfhearted. In 2012, I tried again and wrote a 50,000 word story. I was constantly unhappy with what I was producing and felt it was dreck at the end, although I was thrilled to have actually produced a novel.

        Recently someone asked to read it, which spurred me to reread it, and with the perspective of three years distance, it wasn’t nearly as bad as I remembered. And the other person, while pointing out problems, gave fairly good feedback. It’s not a story I really want to develop further, but the experience strengthened my confidence substantially.

        All of which is to say, our perspective in the day to day writing sessions often isn’t reliable. There’s something to be said for forcing ourselves to just get the rough draft out.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. chemistken says:

    You know, whatever you do probably won’t be perfect, but that’s okay. You’ll learn from that and improve each time. Just do the best you can and not try to take shortcuts like some other writers do.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. cheriereich says:

    I love the premise for T.N.N.! Sometimes you just have to do the best you can. We learn more from each project we do. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. aandj8804 says:

    Love this: “And if I do screw this up, I’ll call it a learning experience and try to move on. Because there’s one thing I know for certain: I won’t learn anything if I just sit here worrying about my imperfections as a writer.”

    It sounds like you know what you are doing! I don’t see any insecurities here. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. That’s a good attitude. We learn by our mistakes, and hopefully you won’t have any!!!! Go for it!!! Wishing you much success!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Congrats on getting it out tomorrow! I don’t think writing is ever perfect, since there is no set perfection…only opinions of what perfect is in this case. Here’s wishing you all the best!

    Liked by 1 person

    • James Pailly says:

      That’s an important point: no matter how “perfect” your writing is, some things are just a matter of personal taste. You can’t worry about that. There’s nothing you can do to control your readers’ tastes and preferences.

      Like

  7. Good luck with your re-launch! It’s hard not to second guess ourselves, but we have to push through it.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Loni Townsend says:

    I know I can never be perfect in my writing. There’s always something I can tweak here or there. So I just strive for best possible I can do. I hope your launch goes well!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: