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  1. DeadMoon

    DeadMoon Contributing Member Contributor

    Dec 7, 2014
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    fargo, ND

    Kill your darlings

    Discussion in 'General Writing' started by DeadMoon, Aug 24, 2015.

    Until recently I took the quote "kill your darlings" by William Faulkner (least that is one source) to mean edit out excess parts of your story if they don't really fit even if you love them ect...

    Today out of the blue (well more of a dim black as I was in a dark basement) I realized the the quote could be applied to my life as well. If I truly want to change my life from where I am and someday be able to make a living off of writing, then I myself need to "kill my darlings" those pesky part of it that holds me back from real progress.

    I am not much for facebook so that not an issue but I do find myself watching a bit to much videos on you tube and possibly drinking to much wine before I put in some writing time. Other then that it's also about leting go of the ideas that just are not forming right even some of the ones that have been simmering on the back burner for a bit to long.

    The final and I think the largest darling of them all is my depression and negativity they combined effort have held me back more then all else combined.
    jannert likes this.
  2. Sack-a-Doo!

    Sack-a-Doo! Contributing Member Contributor

    Jun 7, 2015
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    An interesting thought... or train of thought. I've been sidetracked so many times while trying to get this writing thing to work, but I always thought of those distractions as:
    • hobbies,
    • encroaching life,
    • situations I could do nothing about (like depression or anxiety), or even
    • alternate ways of making a living.
    To think of them as 'darlings' might just be putting them into perspective.
  3. GingerCoffee

    GingerCoffee Web Surfer Girl Contributor

    Mar 3, 2013
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    Ralph's side of the island.
    In business it's called, "don't fall in love with your assets."
    Tesoro likes this.
  4. Foxe

    Foxe Active Member

    Oct 21, 2011
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    In the drug world it's called, "don't get high on your own supply."
    Tesoro, Sack-a-Doo! and Tenderiser like this.
  5. uncephalized

    uncephalized Active Member

    Mar 11, 2015
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    Negative thinking/anxiety/depression can sabotage all of your endeavors. A lot of people have made progress on this sort of problem with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) without the use of any drugs. It's a set of techniques to learn different habits of thought, which in turn affect your mood and motivation.

    I don't have depression issues, but my wife does. Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy by Dr. David Burns is a good read, and one that's been recommended to us from multiple sources.

    Best of luck improving your life! I hope everything works out for you. :)
    DeadMoon likes this.
  6. BookLover

    BookLover Contributing Member

    Mar 31, 2014
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    I was able to cut out television for the most part. There are a few other things I could cut out to make my writing life more productive, but those things give my mind a break from stress. Writing isn't stressful, but it is a very involved process for me where my brain is very much "on", so I'm not sure if replacing those relaxing, albeit non-productive, activities with something that takes a great deal of mental effort would even be successful. They say you have to replace "bad" habits with something that gives you a similar reward or else the bad habits will come back.

    So I guess the trick would be to find a way to make the writing process as rewarding as drinking or facebook or whatever else cuts into your time. Sounds tricky.

    Oh, and depression, that's always been a problem for me. Maybe use it to write some amazingly dark fiction. No one can write dark like the deeply depressed. :bigwink:
  7. jannert

    jannert Contributing Member Supporter Contributor

    Mar 7, 2013
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    That's a very interesting insight. If stuff you love to do holds you back from achieving what you want, then kill it off. Within reason, of course! Not a bad outlook, actually.
  8. Link the Writer

    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

    Sep 24, 2009
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    Alabama, USA
    I don't think that's your 'darling', that's your enemy. I have Generalized Anxiety Disorder and let me tell you, it has not helped me with my writing at all. It actually stunted it for 11 years.

    'Darling' in this instance means taking out what you really loved to make the story actually work. Of course, as Jannert said, do it within reason. Sometimes some of those things actually need to be in the story, you just have to figure out how to make it work.
    DeadMoon likes this.

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