Nov. 1st, 2011

jackshoegazer: (Jesus/Hipster)
“Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know its normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through.” 

For the first time in my writing 'career', I received a comment during my previous workshop that alluded to my writing having that "special thing" that Ira is speaking about.  As soon as I read this quote, it resonated.  It synched up with Stephen King's proclamation to just write.  Write all the time.  The only way you'll ever get better is to keep writing, to keep doing the work.  It synched up with I forget who, some famous singer-songwriter who said to throw away your first thousand songs and then you'll be good.  They're all getting at the same thing––that real talent isn't really talent––it's work.  And I think tentatively that I'm finally getting to to point where all this polishing is finally producing a shine.

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jackshoegazer

February 2012

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