We work so hard to make time for our writing. We rearrange our schedule to create an hour or even minutes for it. We get ahead on work projects and errands around town as well as in the house so that we don’t have any distractions when we write.
So when it’s time to write, why do we pause?
We avoid what we love the most and return to the mundane. We find busy work to keep us occupied, watch junk TV shows and make excuses for why we’re not writing.
It’s time to stop tensing up at the thought of writing and face the issue of why we’re really avoiding that beloved writing project.
We’re Unable To Accept Imperfection
If it’s not perfect, why bother? We always want the first draft to be perfect and find ourselves self-conscious when it’s not. What we forget is that even a writer with a manuscript accepted by a major publishing house still rewrites large sections of that novel before it hits bookstore shelves.
We avoid writing when our joy of the craft turns into fear of judgment—rather, self-judgment. It’s tempting to have everything figured out before you start writing.
But not knowing everything—and yes, even failing—is part of the writing process. Creativity flourishes from failure. How do you improve and grow if you never fail?
You can always cut the fluff and ridiculous ideas from your writing later. Start writing now, no matter what words land on the page.
We Fear The Need To Improve
The story is about the journey, not the destination. Same goes for you as a writer.
A champion’s story doesn’t go like this: “It was easy to write my novel. My writing is always loved by all and I’m never asked to change a word of it.”
Of course not. That’s a boring story.
Champions overcome obstacles. Champions face challenges. Champions are bombarded with rejection and cold shoulders. Champions strive to improve. Champions reach goals.
Isn’t that the story you want for yourself?
Not accepting our need to improve is why we avoid writing. But mastering this craft takes time. It’s why we earn an MFA. It’s why we attend writing conferences. It’s why we seek out advice from industry professionals. If you truly love to write, you’ll naturally want to become a better writer, even when others think you’re perfect at writing.
We’ve Turned Our Writing Passion Into Work
If you feel you must write, the inspiration to write gets zapped. Writing is no longer something exciting to do, but something that has to be done.
We are conditioned to separate work from play. As the saying goes, “work hard, play hard.” We dread something we love once it shifts into the work category.
That’s why we avoid writing. When our passion becomes our work, we separate the play aspect from it.
There’s no fun in that.
How can you reignite your writing passion? All it takes is 15 minutes.
For 15 minutes, visualize the characters, the scenes and the story you want to create. Ask yourself these questions:
- How do these ideas make you feel emotionally and physically?
- What excites you about this writing project?
- What are the reasons you want to write in the first place?
Before the 15 minutes are over, you’ll be eager to shake away the trance and begin writing.
What we’re really avoiding when we avoid writing is our commitment to our craft. Our worries and fears can cloud our creativity and inspiration. Sometimes, what we need is a reminder of why we started writing in the first place.
Why do you avoid writing? Share your situation below.