Friday, 30 April 2010

Writing paralysis

Yesterday I met with a coach who wants to write a book.  And she's wanted to write for some time; we discussed the subject when we met last year.

She has made progress; she's worked through a model book proposal format, so she done some in-depth work on the book and received feedback from friends. 

Why hasn't she gone further with her writing?

Three reasons for writing paralysis:
  1. We want it to be perfect.
  2. We think everything's already been said.
  3. We aren't completely connected with the book.
These are common challenges people face when they set out to write a book and they probably stop 8 out of 10 people from going further. 

What can be done to break writing paralysis?

  1. You can only do the best you can at any given point in time.  There's always a second edition or reprint if you find other things you wished you'd included.  It will never be perfect.
  2. You can only write from your unique perspective.  It's your life experience that creates the difference because it can never be the same as the next person.  Even if you went through exactly the same events and circumstances, you'd still come out differently because you would have your own perspective on events.  That unique perspective is the place you begin to write.
  3. You have to create writing your book as a visceral experience.  Not academic in your head, but a down to earth getting your hands dirty job that you know will make a difference to someone.
It was interesting that we both work from the same place.  That if what we do helps just one person to move on further with their life path then what we've done, the effort, the ideas and the passion, will have been worthwhile.

If you want to write a book, then ask yourself if you have the right to deprive someone of your wisdom and life experience when it might be the one thing to make a difference for them.

No comments:

Post a Comment