This is truly a Monday. Do you ever have those days where you wonder if what you’re doing is any good? It seems to happen to me several times during the course of writing a book. I’m excited about the book and making steady progress, and then WHAM! One day I just think it’s all terrible, it’s boring, it’s lame. And then because it’s all those things, I wonder why I should even bother continuing to write it. I know people talk about writer’s block. This is different. It’s not that I don’t know what to write, it’s that I don’t know if what I’m writing is worth reading. It’s enough to make one want to scrap an entire book and start over!
Thankfully, I never actually delete the current work in progress. I don’t burn the pages or anything else so dramatic. I say thankfully, because I’ll leave it alone for a few days or even a few weeks. Then, I’ll come back and start reading it from the beginning. That’s when I’ll know, because it’s when I’ll know if I was right the first time – when I wrote it, or the second time – when I dismissed it.
This may seem like a destructive path to follow with my thoughts. However, I’ve learned that in the long run, it’s probably healthy. This is true simply because I don’t stop at, “It’s not good enough.” I start with, “Is it good enough?” If I’m asking the question, then my answer might just be that it is, and if it’s not, then I can figure out what will make it good enough or even start over with something new.
I have learned one thing over the years, never stop at, “You’re bad.” That has a period at the end of it. Instead ask, “What do I need to do to be better?” That is a question that’s forward-looking. It is full of hope, and hope is always better than despair.