I run into so many people with the urge to write… but they don’t. They don’t do it. Sounds familiar right? You could throw a rock and hit a writer in Los Angeles, but you could throw a rock and hit a handful of wish-I-was-writing writers. Far more common. It’s not that these people aren’t capable, that they don’t have good ideas, or that they don’t want to do it. Most of these people are afraid. Welcome to fear of failure 101.
Trust in Your Ideas
A common hiccup is “I have this amazing idea, but I don’t want to screw it up.” So you sit on it, and sit on it, and sit on it, until it’s so squashed that you never write it at all.Trust in yourself and your ideas. Do your story justice by writing it! Click To Tweet
Use Checks and Balances
If you suffer from the fear of “ruining” your idea, plan it out. Outlines are useful tools to organize story beats. That way you have a guide to the next scene when or if you get stuck.
Engaging in a community helps too. A close friend or a writers group keeps you in check. You can run ideas, outlines, and pages by these people for perspective.
Research Related Content
Be aware of what’s being bought or written that’s related to your idea. I know we all like to think our minds are wells of creative originality, but sadly it isn’t so. No one is going to be able to tell your story the WAY you tell it, but there’s a likelihood that someone has already told something similar.
Don’t let this deter you. Someone else made it? Must be a good idea then.
Reference related scripts, NOT TO COPY, but to investigate how they set up their action – what works, what didn’t work, what would you do differently. Or just watch the film and be done with it. Don’t brood over someone else’s work for too long, just use it as a reference point moving forward. When you get stuck, it can be great inspiration.
Be Honest About Fear
Look deep into the difference between holding off on an idea because of fear versus holding off because you need time to figure it out.
Holding off isn’t an excuse to NOT write. Tackle another idea in the meantime. But if your story really is bursting out of you, and you just wish there was some sort of certainty it won’t suck… well, you don’t get a guarantee.
Let It Suck
Give yourself permission to be terrible. Really open yourself up to the possibility that your first draft will be a wreckage of human waste. Many first drafts are. That is why they aren’t final drafts.
By setting yourself up with unrealistic expectations, you’re inhibiting your writing. Do yourself a big favor. Stop pressuring yourself to be perfect. Your writing doesn’t have to be perfect. It just has to be written. Click To Tweet