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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

PEP Talk

I was thinking again...this time on my way to the post office after work.

I was thinking about how easily it is to be intimidated by the writing process.  I mean, fifty to one hundred thousand words?  That alone can cause a panic attack. 

We read brilliant books.

The plots are fresh.

The characters are real and lovable.

They suck us in and refuse to let us go until the ride is over.

They move us to tears, make us laugh out loud, growl and grumble.

They change us.

They stay with us.

If attempting to write something that will accomplish all of that isn't intimidating, I don't know what is.

And I'm not here to make you feel the weighty obligation pressing down on your shoulders.  I'm here to make you feel better gosh darn it!

So here's my revelation to you:

Are you ready?

They are just words.

Yeah, they can pack a punch and it's our job to find the right ones, but at the end of the day, it's nothing but words.

Think about that brilliant book you read.

Were there ANY words in there that you didn't know?

Were there ANY words in that book that were truly exotic or unusual?

I'm betting not.

I'm betting they were just ordinary words.

Words you already know.

Used in an extraordinary way.

But the pep talk doesn't end there.

If we choose the wrong word(s),

(and it does happen--sometimes too often for comfort),

then we just delete them and start over!

What a deal!

While it might seem like I'm oversimplifying - and okay, I kinda am -

But water created the Grand Canyon.  Can't get simpler than water, can you?  And look at the majesty water creates:




I don't know about you, but it makes me feel lots better! 

The only building blocks any of us need.

Just words.

I can do that.

So can YOU.

EDITED TO ADD:
I about swallowed my tongue when I read #1 on this list.  What a coincidence (or Co-inky-dink as a friend says)

18 comments:

Talli Roland said...

Great post and so true. Sometimes we think the answers are to be found everywhere else except us! Sit down, write the words, work hard, and it can be done.

Thanks!

KarenG said...

I love this post!! I want to print it and put it on my fridge (which is where I go when I'm feeling overwhelmed hehe).

Wendy Ramer said...

Yes, but the water flowed in a particular way to form the Grand Canyon. And we must order our words in a particular way to tell a great story. That is where the talent comes in. And the good thing about us bloggers...we're loaded with talent! How lucky are we?!

Stina Lindenblatt said...

I love the part, "they are just words." That makes it easier when we have to delete them after spending two hours coming up with them. :D

Great post!

JustineDell said...

This is an excellent post! Just words! I think I can remember that the next time I'm screaming at my computer screen because something isn't right. Or I'm berating myself because so-n-so is so much better than me and I'll never be able to read another book because it makes me feel 2 feet tall.

I'll remember that they are just words!! Thanks for such a good post!

~JD

Lola Sharp said...

I'm new here. I've seen you around, and I think it was on Roxy's blog that you mentioned Depeche Mode, which stuck with me. I saw you again on someone's comments, and I popped in! :o) I love DM, too.
(I just turned 40, so I suppose we have that and writing in common, as well.)

Great post. They are 'just words', BUT words have power.

Matthew Rush said...

Very encouraging WORDS. Thanks MissV!

Creepy Query Girl said...

Great minds! I agree, the words by themselves aren't spectacular. It's what you do with them.

Dawn said...

What an inspirational post! I also agree with Wendy - the water *did* flow just right to create that canyon. But it took time...

I'm willing to put in the hours to hone my craft. I just need to get *okay* with deleting when the words don't flow right the first time :-)

Jen said...

Great post!! When you think of it on such a wide spectrum you can be overwhelmed and then the words don't flow how they should... however when you take the approach that they are indeed just words they poetically slip off the tongue! Beautiful thought for sure :)

Ann Best said...

Awesome words of encouragement! Yes, words are all any of us have. Words as simple as water. Just use them!!

MissV said...

Wow! Thanks for all the positive feedback today. I'm wallowing in warm fuzzies today!

I NEED to be doing this #*@&! data entry. I've got two portfolios that need to be entered. But I can't get myself to focus!

I added a link at the end of my post. It was just too ironic to read #1 on the list here:

http://www.guidetoliteraryagents.com/blog/7+Things+Ive+Learned+So+Far+By+Christine+Fonseca.aspx

Elana Johnson said...

Hey! I posted about this a while ago. It brought me great comfort too. :)

Shannon said...

Great post. Definitely helps to keep it in perspective.

Saumya said...

Wonderful post!! Makes the entire process actually seem manageable, hehe. Thanks!!

Lindsay (a.k.a Isabella) said...

Wow, great post. My new mantra is now "they are just words"!

Tahereh said...

WOOT WOOT!!!

YES.
this!!

you rock!

Stephen Tremp said...

I look for inspiration from within and from outside of myself. I can find it anywhere. Sometimes looking at IMAGES on Google is all I need to get the creative juices flowing.

Stephen Tremp