1. Georgew
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    Georgew Member

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    Being self critical, the biggest hurdle to face when aspiring to be a writer?

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by Georgew, Mar 3, 2011.

    I'm extremely self critical of any and everything I write. Not the 'I'll insult my work so you compliment it' self critical. The I'll insult my work because I genuinely am that insecure about my writing.

    Writing has always been personal for me, I always found it hard and or embarrassing to share my work. With that came a lack of advice because no one could tell me what areas of writing I needed to improve upon.

    Of course sharing it here anonymously is a different ball game but I'm hoping I can push through my extremely self critical nature and start to better my writing and maybe get a bit more confident in the material I produce.

    Anyone else find that they are their own biggest critic?
     
  2. Mallory
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    Mallory Mallegory. Contributor

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    No, my biggest problem is finishing what I start.

    I don't feel comfortable sharing with non-writers, but I'm ok with sharing with fellow writers and I like getting the feedback.
     
  3. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    One method i found help some people when it comes to turning of the critic is to spend some time text roleplay with others in chat format. It forces you to in a bunch of minutes write something interesting for the pother person to react to. Since you job is to keep the game running, and keeping the person you play with entertained you got no time press the "delete" key, or stop and angst over your writing.

    It wont magically fix you confidence issues about your writing, but it helps you develope a work routine when that self criticism don't get in the way of producing.
     
  4. eccentric_m
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    eccentric_m Member

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    Haha. I have both of those problems. The latter more so than the former, but I know exactly what you guys mean.
     
  5. victoria28
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    victoria28 Member

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    Hi, i struggle with exactly the same things as you. i hate anyone to read my work, even when i was at school i didnt like to read my work out to the class, i didnt even like the teacher to read it.

    I suppose it's all to do with confidence, and as people compliment your work you'll grow more confidence in your writing. As the confidence develops so will the writing, well that's what im hoping for anyway :)

    It's great to come on here though because you dont know anyone and they cant judge you personally. everyone will just help you to improve your work. so much easier than going to a writing group, taking it in turns to read out what you've wrote!

    good luck with your writing!
     
  6. Lemex
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    Lemex That's Lord Lemex to you. Contributor

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    Being self-critical has almost destroyed my desire to write fiction at least once. I can't help it either, I'm that sort of person.

    One thing I find good to do is to take a few days away from your main project and just write silly little things. I find that sometimes therapeutic too.
     
  7. Leonardo Pisano
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    Leonardo Pisano Active Member

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    'Good' and 'better' are sworn enemies..... Just organise your work in iterations: write, then correct, in several passes.
     
  8. VM80
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    VM80 Contributing Member Contributor

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    I was like that until a few years ago. I didn't share anything with anyone.

    But one day, I suddenly felt like I wanted some feedback, or even just to know someone else has read something I've written.

    It may work out the same way for you. :)

    Good luck.
     
  9. Elgaisma
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    Elgaisma Contributing Member Contributor

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    Maybe it's because I have always shared mine but have always been fairly realistic about it. I am aware I have faults with punctuation, and pacing but I am working on it. I know my plots are bizarre and my characters good.
     
  10. RomanticRose
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    RomanticRose Active Member

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    Being overly self-critical is better than the other extreme of thinking every word that flows from your pen is pure gold and far above any criticisms of any kind.

    The trick is to find a middle ground. One step to this is accepting that you will never get it perfect. Perfection is simply not one of the available options. Through revisions, make the writing as clear as you can, interesting, with a nice rhythm and flow. Make sure it conveys the thoughts/feelings/images you want it to convey. Make sure your SPaG is clean.

    Then you free the words out into the world. Not everyone will get it, but you never know whose life you might change with your words.
     
  11. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Personally I never been the self critical type. I proud of what I do. I work hard for what I do, and it normal to fail miserably sometimes, It is a part of learning.

    I have no problem with sharing my text to the world either, but at times there are works i don't want to share with specific people.

    Most often I'm emotionally involved with in some way, who might be hurt by what I write. For example, occasionally I break someones heart, thats a part of life. I believe it might be less awkward for everyone involved that someone who heart I have broken don't read any fiction I written with a romance in it, before the wound heals.

    And I don't like having people I live with read my text before I'm finished. I prefer some mental space when I work with my texts. That means keeping all people i live with out of my writing until I done.
     
  12. queen_guinevere
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    queen_guinevere New Member

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    I am extremely self-critical. I have good days and bad days, and today is a bad day. I don't feel like I'm ever going to be good enough, and I want to get published so bad it hurts. I have written two books, and am on the fifth edit or so of each of those, as well as writing new material. But even though other people have given me positive feedback, it's hard to have the necessary faith in myself.
     
  13. KillianRussell
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    KillianRussell Contributing Member

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  14. w176
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    w176 Contributing Member Contributor

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    Hmmmm. Interesting. I view being self critical mostly as an emotional state, as well as believing that you **** gold is mostly an emotional state. Both having little or nothing to do with if you can handle and implement feedback which mostly is a cognitive skill.
     
  15. guamyankee
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    guamyankee Contributing Member

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    If you only share your writing with yourself, you are naturally going to be very self-critical. Why not let someone else do the job for you? Know in advance that no matter how good your work is, there's always a better or a different way to do it. So, your work will be critiqued and analyzed from every possible angle. The most famous authors in the world could post samples of their writing on here, and I'm willing to bet that the people on this forum could find a way to write it better.

    So don't take it too personal, and don't fear sharing your work!
     
  16. Eunoia
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    Eunoia Contributing Member Contributor

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    No, I'm not my biggest critic. Sometimes I find it hard to critique my own writing because I'll be too attached to what I've written. Although it can be personal what you've written, you have to understand that what you're critiquing is the writing, and not you personally. But it is important to be self-critical, as well as getting critiques from others.
     
  17. RomanticRose
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    RomanticRose Active Member

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    But if you can't get past the "emotional state" on either extreme, you probably won't get your work out there to get the feedback to handle and implement.
     
  18. Georgew
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    Georgew Member

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    Yes it is an emotional state, but if you believe your every word is golden you are far less likely to be able to take feedback because you wouldn't believe you needed it.
     
  19. Porcupine
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    Porcupine Contributing Member

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    This is sound advice. First, just write. No matter whether you think it's awful or not. Then let it rest for a while, and then come back, read it, and improve. Even if what you wrote was terrible (which it probably isn't), at least you will have material to improve, rather than sitting there with an empty page.

    I've recommended this approach to many people, and so far it has never failed.

    As for showing work to others - I'm usually very excited about showing stuff to others, but I have learned that my first drafts are usually still too rough to handle, and now only bless a very select few lectors with my initial scribblings. :rolleyes:
     
  20. Radhika
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    Radhika Member

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    This is an interesting method. I admit that this has helped my writing though, but once you wrote that, I realized how good it was for me to do so. I used to do it just for fun, but great method!
     
  21. Tesoro
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    Tesoro Contributing Member Contributor

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    I am quite self critic too. That is, i would much appreciate comments or critic from professionals, like agents, pblishers and so on, but i have not had the chance to get that yet. Im only in the first attempts to get something published so im still a beginner and i dont know who to turn to to get some valid comments on my story BEfore sending it off to the publishers.
     

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