Permission to Write Crap

Every year I start my J-1 class off with an oath. Students must raise their right hands and solemnly swear to give themselves permission to write crap. I want them to turn off internal editors and just write. As Nora Roberts says, “You can’t fix a blank page.”
Enter my personal writing life. Tonight when I sat down to work on the WIP, I freaked out. Crap times 10 million. That’s what I saw. This character is still all over the place. There are moments, but, yeah, it’s like my life interfered with the character’s life and there’s no continuity and no real rhythm to the words.
I Goggled plot help and found this cool site. It didn’t tell me anything new, but it helped me regroup.
I’ve spent the last two hours getting back to the basics of my main character, comparing what I know about story–what I’ve learned over the years from workshop, what I love to read and what I teach–and I like what I’ve got.
For a few moments today I forgot to give myself permission to write crap, and to be totally okay with that because that first draft turns into something special in the revision process.
Glad the freak out is over. Hope I don’t forget this lesson ever again.

2 responses to “Permission to Write Crap

  1. I have to fight it all the time. But I am finally back to my icky, crappy rough draft writing and I am no longer freaking out while I write. It needs a lot of fixing, but I like it better this way. I like flying by the seat of those pants of mine. Good luck!

  2. Good point, well made. Letting it flow is so important.

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