On Writing- Writing Shit

Writing, like any other art, takes loads of practice in order to improve and by practice I mean writing lots and lots of shit. You can be a veteran writer and still churn out crap like a year one typist. You can pound at the keys for hours and forms words into logical sentences, but it will still suck.

And that is part of being a writer and it will never go away.

This kind of process, the process of knowing that you can write well but when you press your fingers into the spine of the keyboard you find the stuff on screen isn’t even fit for a garage sale sign.

Though that would be a bizarre sign, “Come on by for the shit! Lots of it!”

What breaks many people from doing this job consistently is what happened to me last night. This very situation occurred to me as I was trying to finish a short story. I got about half-way through, looked at the words, and was just disappointed in what I had written. I wrenched myself from the keys, looked over the moors, and threw my glass of sherry against the manor window as I pondered what kind of God would give me such a curse!

It wasn’t porn or anything, though I sometimes wonder what that would look like, maybe people having sex on top of balloons or something? That would have been an improvement because it would have at least made a laugh and the one thing I pride myself on is the ability to make myself laugh at my own writing. This may sound either psychotic or extremely prideful, but a good measurement of any kind of comedy is whether or not the writer creating it can laugh at it. You are you’re first audience and if you aren’t laughing at the scene with the scuba driver running a driving school in full underwater gear because he is afraid of his students driving them into a lake and drowning, then no one will.

Last night I wrote terribly, does this mean I am done with writing? No. If I was so easily broken I wouldn’t have made it as far as I have in my career. This goes for you all too, because if you hit the wall, which we all do, it’s your choice whether you are staying glued to it or peeling yourself off and having another go at making a hole in it!

You are going to get torn down by anything with a set of lungs, including yourself, so if you ever stop because of any of them then you never were a writer in the first place. Writing is pressing on, and those who don’t become telemarketers!

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Nick enjoys making things and drinking coffee, specifically the latter, for without it the former wouldn’t get done. He also wrote a book titled “Where Monsters Lie & Other Tales”