I love writing. I always have. All the parts, too. Make believe stories, opinion pieces, even the occasional essay. I wasn’t always “good” at it, but I l loved it. I would take a 10 page essay over a 50 question test any day. I even enjoyed my grammar classes. I went as far as diagramming sentences in the books I read at night. What could be more interesting than an author’s word choice and the placement it has in a sentence. Every detail, chosen with care.
Words have always impacted me. Big and small. I like how certain words stick out on a page-big and unusual, but full of life. I like when I don’t know a word and I rush to the dictionary (or Google, let’s be honest) and learn its meaning. It’s like a collection in my brain that I can always come back to and find use for them.
As a teacher, I read dozens of new “kid books” each year. Last year, I purchased “The Word Collector” by Peter H. Reynolds at the book fair. After skimming the pages I knew it would be well loved-if not by the kids, then me.
This book felt like a glimpse into my mind and reignited my passion for words and their arrangement on a page. I realized I wished I could have written this book. I felt like someone was peeking inside my mind. I felt seen. You might be thinking, “A children’s book made you feel all that?” Hell yeah, it did!
And just like that another sign was dangling in my face that my passions were leading me elsewhere.
I wanted to unleash my love of words on the world. I wanted to fill up pages and capture scenes with just right imagery. I wanted to write. And I did. I do. But it comes in spurts.
With all this passion bubbling inside, there is also a thick layer of perfectionism that I struggle to break through. It’s tough. It’s stubborn. It wants the best when all I can give is my best. I end up staring at that stupid, taunting blinking cursor. All the collected words banging around in my head unable to spill over the pages making beautiful puddles of sentences. All because I am afraid.
Of what, you ask? I don’t know. It’s laughable, really. I know that authors will say “just write.” All you have to do is start writing. So, what am I waiting for?
I’ll tell you: some damn advice about how to get over perfectionism. Ha! How about that? Anyone got some?
Sometimes writing about not writing is easier than sitting down to write what you want. *Nods to family member who wrote something similar the other day.*
I know I am not alone here, so for real, any advice is good advice. Please. And thank you…