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  1. XLadyX
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    XLadyX Banned

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    Looking Back

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by XLadyX, Oct 27, 2014.

    Looking back when you first started writing, did you ever think you would be this successful today or attract readers? It took me a long time to find my calling. In grade school, my teachers always said I had creative stories for English class, and my English professor in college said the same thing. I never thought to pursue a career in writing until I began writing for therapy full time and I figure, hey, why not see if I can get something out of this?

    Are you at a point with your writing that you are satisfied?
     
  2. Darkkin
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    Darkkin Reflection of a nobody Contributor

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    Following the footprints in the sand...
    Writing evolves with you as you grow. If you don't, you stagnate. The things that seemed earth shattering in high school look ridiculous once you move into a bigger pond. Perspectives change, while some constants remain.

    To define it is a bit like trying to bottle sunshine. Set the bottle in a bright patch, your bottlle is full, night comes and you have nothing in the bottle. It cannot be measured.

    How do you define satisfaction? To some it is knowing, you tried, failed misearbly, yet still the the courage to try again. You had the courage to change and listen, but still remain true to yourself. Is it the dedication of writing each day, even if it is a handful of starshine?

    Writing is a love, hate relationship. To some, a necessary as breathing. There are moments of pride and moments when screaming seems like the only viable option. There isn't a mile marker etched in stone, there are those small facets of a jewel that gleam only after hours of painstaking work.

    Am I satisfied with this little rigamorole? Well, yes and no, I hit the edit button.

    Edit: I hit the edit button twice, I had a double ii in knowing.
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2014
  3. Miss Red
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    Miss Red Member

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    When I first began writing, I was blissfully unaware how making books were. I was just writing for the sake of writing.
    And yet, I knew it was the one thing I was good at. It was something that I fell in love with. This was something I would build my life around.

    But as time went on, (and when I learned how books and stories are made,) my earlier stories became inadequate.
    My writing matured and evolved, but I never find it satisfactory. It's good, and feels great when I'm finished, but it's never 'perfect.' Not the way I intended it.

    I find that it's easier for me to write these days, when I pretend that I've never wrote a word before, or to pretend that I'll never publish this work professionally. To write for the sake of writing.

    *shrugs*
    Hope you have fun writing. :)
     
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  4. peachalulu
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    peachalulu Contributing Member Reviewer Contributor

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    That's hard to say. Satisfaction seems to mean that you've reached a final point where you can relax. I don't know if I'm ever going to reach that stage. I'm too busy trying to improve my grammar, seek out ways to be fresh, and learn from authors. But I did put out Worms of Wicher-Woo because I think it's my best ( for now ) and I wanted to share it. So I have mixed feelings about it, I know it needs a proof reader to smooth out my errors, but story-wise I feel satisfied with it. But who knows what I'll feel about it in a couple of years. I've looked back on a few of my stories that I posted here and thought - yikes, those need work.
     
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  5. EdFromNY
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    EdFromNY Hope to improve with age Supporter Contributor

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    When I first read this, I immediately thought of Jimmy Rabbitte.

    Yes and no. I'm satisfied with where my current project is right now, and I've gotten enough feedback to know that, yes, I can definitely write and I'm optimistic about the prospects for publication. But, at the same time, I still have a ways to go. Hell, I'm not even writing full time, yet.
     
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  6. Kasubi
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    Kasubi Member

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    Oh, yes, yes, yes I am.

    And oh, no, no, no I didn't.

    Looking back, I shouldn't be surprised. I was an active writer as a kid. My spelling sucked, my grammar was dreadful, yet I could write a coherent story very easily. At primary I read a book to my teacher and the last page was missing. She told me to write my own ending and was sufficiently impressed to mention it in assembly.

    In my teens I used to take the train to London every other weekend with my dad. I'd written a vampire story and was reading it to him. Towards the end, the train stopped and a man sitting opposite got up and apologised. "This is my stop," he said, "but I really wish I could hear the end."

    That was the point at which the penny dropped. It's rare enough that adults listen to what children have to say, but because I had a good story to tell, he wasn't just listening, he was riveted.

    So - it should have been obvious.

    But it wasn't.

    I was about 27 when I seriously tried to write my first novel (I turn 34 tomorrow). I had some success. I've never found it hard to find a publisher, but selling books has been a whole other matter. And it's the selling books, rather than the getting published, that the great, faceless 'They' judge you on.

    Last year, I landed a fabulous publisher. Not one of the Big Six, but the Top Ten as far as I'm concerned. First time I've ever been an audiobook or had a proper marketing budget behind me. It's been an incredible ride. I'm truly grateful for the experience. Loved every minute of it.

    So, in that respect - yes! I'm very happy with where I'm at today. Especially as, just before writing this one, I was honestly thinking of packing it in. It's a lot of words for something that gets a mention on a small press blog and forgotten about as soon as it's released. I didn't really have the heart to do it again.

    Now, I'm halfway through my next novel and enthused with all the fervour of the newly converted.

    However... (and there's always a 'but' at the end of these good fortune stories, right?)... Looking back (with Mike + The Mechanics stuck in my head), I guess I do occasionally hanker for the good ol' days of cruddy grammar and crap spelling, when it was about imagination rather than which genre might sell and how many stars I'll get on Amazon. When it was about walking past a closed-down shop and imagining a parallel universe in the basement, then write about it, illegibly, in crayon. When you thought everyone would be as impressed as your dad.

    Y'know. Being an author just ain't the same as being a writer, really.

    Saps the joy sometimes.
     
  7. Mckk
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    Mckk Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    Since I've never suffered from lack of confidence, I've always thought my writing was great at the time of writing lol. But it wasn't until I started writing my novel in earnest when I was 19, 20 or so that I started actually showing people my work. When I was a teen, I thought my stuff was awesome, but I'd never show it to anyone. The thought didn't really occur to me. I always knew I wanted to be published one day, but I knew those stories weren't it. Deep down I knew they were all silly drivel, but I loved it all.

    And, true to my nature, I still think my writing is pretty good now. Needing improvement doesn't make you a bad writer - improvement is always necessary. As the Chinese say, "There's always a higher mountain." (or, "for every tall mountain, there is always one that's taller.") Meaning - you might be good, but there will always be someone better than you. Realising your writing is actually good doesn't mean you think you have nothing to learn. If you think there's nothing more to learn, then your writing probably isn't half as good as you thought anyway lol :p

    So, anyway, since I've always thought of my writing as good, I'm not surprised now that people seem to enjoy reading my stuff (had a couple of beta readers and they've all enjoyed the book, so it's certainly passable). However, sometimes I look back at the stuff I used to write when I was 14 and my word, it was terrible. Knowing where I am now, I am often surprised at how much I've improved, and what's more interesting is not knowing just where or when or how I learnt how to write. Sometimes I think of the marked contrast between the quality of writing between the time when I was a teen and now at 27, and I wonder how much better my writing's gonna be when I turn 40 :) Now I don't quite wanna be 40 yet, but I do wonder - it's exciting to wonder and anticipate what sort of skill level I could or may have reached in another 10 years. As long as I keep writing, I can only get better. And given what I write now is hardly unpresentable, I definitely feel good about my writing.

    So yeah, I'm satisfied with my writing. I know there're things to improve, I know some of my weaknesses, I definitely know my forte and now that my writing is presentable, I'm developing in the direction of how to structure stories and finding what I actually enjoy writing - and learning how to make a book out of those elements. It's another stage of learning. I've found my voice, and now I must find my story-telling technique, but I'm no longer messing around and worrying about the basic quality of writing, even though of course I work with that aspect every time I edit. I'm worrying about much bigger things, such as the manuscript as a whole and how it all hangs together.
     
  8. 123456789
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    123456789 Contributing Member Contributor

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    No
     
  9. Kingtype
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    Kingtype Always writing or thinking things XD Staff Role Play Moderator Contributor

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    The day I'm fully satisfied is the day pigs fly.

    But I've gotten better and will continue to do so.

    I'm not sure if what I write is good or not but I've had a great time writing it even the super terrible stuff :D some people have really enjoyed some of stuff and of course stuff has gotten ripped to pieces. I'd say I'm confident.

    Though I love what I write I always want to do better then before as I'm sure everybody does.

    Soooo I'm never completely satisfied as it helps the drive.
     
  10. Bryan Romer
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    Bryan Romer Contributing Member Contributor

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    I've loved writing stories ever since I knew that such things could be done. Before I started writing I told my friends stories which I made up on the spot. I have always felt that my writing was as good as anybody's so I am thankful but not altogether surprised at what small success I have had to date.

    If by "satisfied" you mean not capable or needing further improvement, then no, I am not satisfied. If you mean whether I feel capable of producing work that is saleable, then yes.
     

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