Jul 20, 2015
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Hey there, friends. In episode 018 of the Write Now
podcast, I'm going to give you some advice that I'll bet you
don't hear all that often:
Fail a lot.
As writers, why are we such perfectionists? Why do we expect perfection from ourselves? Shouldn't we understand better than anyone else that the human creature is inherently and beautifully flawed?
I know, I know. I'm guilty of this, too. But let's do something we writers tend to be not-super-great at and dive headfirst into REALITY and admit:
We are human.
We are not perfect.
And that is okay.
Go ahead and repeat that a couple times, whether out loud or simply to yourself. Because it's true, and it's true of everyone.
Especially if you're the type of person who protects yourself
from failure -- and by doing so also prevents yourself from trying.
And protects yourself from success.
Failure fun facts:
Failure is not rejection -- rejection is subjective
Failure is not the opposite of success -- failure is a step toward success.
Failure is not consequence -- before you stop yourself from failing at (a.k.a trying) something, it pays to find out what the consequences for that failure are, if any.
If anyone has been successful at anything, whether it's writing a book or painting a mural or learning to walk, it's because they failed a lot on the way there. The more you fail, the more you'll succeed.
In short, you have all the permission you need to fail
a lot. Now go out and make it happen.
The book of the week.
The paranormal romance genre (often called PNR) has been gaining popularity over the past decade or two, recently exploding into the Twilight phenomenon.
But far before Edward began stalking Bella, Buffy romanced Angel and Spike, readers fell in love with Christine Feehan's dark side, and Elena Michaels was bitten.
I love PNR -- as long as it's well written. There are so many coattail-riders out there post-Twilight success that sometimes it can be hard to tell the good from the bad.
However, I picked up Dark Currents by Jacqueline Carey with blissfully blind confidence.
Jacqueline Carey has long been one of my favorite writers. I first read her (in)famous Kushiel's Dart series in high school and found a whole new world of sexy political intrigue in a uniquely feminine high-fantasy setting. It was new and surprising and soaked in syrupy language while remaining imminently readable.
So when I saw that Ms. Carey had written a PNR series, I was ecstatic. How was she going to deviate from the norm this time? I wondered. I bought all the volumes I could find (which, at time of writing, is 3) and happily began to devour the first, Dark Currents.
Unfortunately, Ms. Carey's considerable skill wasn't enough to elevate this novel from what it was: a perfectly by-the-book (no pun intended) PNR standard. Love triangles, mythical beasts, sociopaths, and a murder mystery should make for an immensely compelling story. But unfortunately, we've seen it all before, and all too often.
Also, I'm still not super 100% sure what to make of the main character's tail.
Keep up-to-date with my reading exploits on Goodreads.
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Do you permit yourself to fail?
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