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Rachel Udin


Newbie Writer Diseases | Rachel Udin

Newbie Writer Diseases

1. Fishing

This isn’t, “I’ve gotten myself into a hole and I’ve written half of it, help me to get out” It’s I have part of an idea and I need someone to help me complete the idea, give me a character and setting.

The truth: If you aren’t passionate about the idea you won’t be able to see it past the first draft. Getting it from someone else won’t feel that special. I think the best thing to do is incubate it.

And BTW, brainstorming with other people doesn’t work: http://www.spring.org.uk/2009/08/brainstorming-reloaded.php We like our own ideas.

2. Problemitize.

Not the same thing as fishing or brainstorming. Brainstorming you have a clue where you want to go. Problemitizing is used as an excuse not to write and make the story yet more perfect in your head so you won’t write it. It doesn’t give you a game plan, but hours of entertainment on how perfect the story will be, so when you get the precious 200 words on the page of your supposed 200,000 word epic, you feel defensive, even though it was 200 words of raw info dump on the plot/story you really didn’t write yet.

3. My Manuscript is so Precious.

People will steal it! I know it. They will see the first draft and see the p9olished gem underneath the pile of poo I have on top of it and then–and then–they will get it *gasp* published as it is and oh my god, people will love it and I won’t get my 10,000 dollar advance.

Umm…

4. Publishing isn’t easy, but it SHOULD be.

Right, because you are that special that you think your manuscript should be published post hast with the other manuscripts. We have gatekeepers for a reason. They tell about quality control. It’s not just arbitrary. Think of it positively instead, it’s 15-20 years to polish your writing away from humiliation.

5. The REVENGE critique.

You hurt me so bad so I’m going to make the same comments on your manuscript because I’m mad at you.

Are you in kindergarten?

Even worse is the revenge critique because someone else got the comment and the person isn’t even involved.

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