A few months ago my sister called me with some bad news. She said that she…
I suppose the short answer to this is, yes. Considering we all experience insecurity in its many forms I think it would be safe to assume that yes, all writers, artists, creatives worry about their chosen creative outlet. Personally, I have been finding that I’m spending so much time perfecting my work that I get very little writing actually done. Having said that, I have written a 50,000 word book. The book is a memoir called On the Other Hand about my life and experiences growing up and living with one hand. But, and this is a big but, it’s still a work in progress and I am yet to finish it. I sometimes wonder, will it ever be finished?
I started writing On the Other Hand 2 years ago and I’ve gone on quite the journey since then. A lot can happen in 2 years but it doesn’t seem that an awful lot of writing has happened in 2 years although I have spent a great deal on trying to get the words right. Whatever right is. I feel like I’m not doing enough. Like I’m not working hard enough. Not writing enough. I know everyones creative process is different and there really is no time limit for a piece of work that is so raw and personal. I am not working to a deadline, nor do I have any preconceived notions about what the finish product should look like. I just really want to write more.
Maybe this isn’t an issue with my word count, rather with my content and expectation of that content. I could have written 100,000 words in two years and still believe I should have written more. What I’ve been fretting over is the actual substance of my book and how I can articulate myself in the most appropriate way. The main question I have been asking myself is: is this good enough? But good enough for who? Who am I trying to impress? Myself? Or my readers? Perhaps it’s both.
Even whilst writing this I’m thinking to myself, forgodssake Emily, this could be valuable time spent writing your book and these words could have greater purpose if you were to write them in a more prestigious piece of work rather than on your blog. Perhaps I should go and write my book, but I am too desperate to know: do other writers worry about writing this much?