At Least Beginning and Early Stage Writers…
I have noticed this over the years, but a couple things over the last few months really brought this concept home.
This functions in two ways. For example, in the Depth workshop, one of the assignments is to see an ex-spouse at the end of a setting assignment. 99 out of 100 of those assignments are negative, hateful, full of loathing or disgust or fear of the ex-spouse.
Fiction folks. You have a choice to move away from the cliche and the negative.
Writing topics in other workshops go along with this trend. If there is a choice between positive outlook and a negative one, the early stage writer will go negative. Almost every time.
This also moves over into real world stuff as well. Early stage writers feel overwhelmed by the idea of writing and publishing. Granted, lots of learning curves, not making much money as the myths say you should, too much bad advice from promotion idiots, so I understand why almost everything I hear from early stage writers is negative.
It is a way of thinking that lets critical voice some tumbling in as well. Critical voice has one job and that is to stop you and it will if you let it.
The longer the writer has been around, the more millions of words through their fingers, the more positive they become. Learning becomes fun. Writing is fun. Keeping up with publishing changes a challenge.
And choices in fiction also tend to swing positive in what we write, decide to write, and so on. Negative and ugly just gets tiring after a while.
Sure, there are a billion things that go wrong all the time to every writer, but later stage writers just roll with it, deal with it, and often try to use what happened as a teaching example to earlier stage writers around them.
Most of the writers I have been working with for the last numbers of years are past the everything-is-negative look and are just doing what they do and producing. Everyone rolls with health issues at times, like I did, like Kris did, but we get back to it when we can. Writing and publishing is just what we do.
But at times I am shocked at how negative some people can be toward something they claim they want to do. If you really want to be a fiction writer, then my suggestion is never make fiction writing work or a negative thing.
If you hear yourself saying, “I got to get some writing done.” Stop.
Or you call your writing “Work.” Stop.
If you look back and see that you had ten or twenty different 15 minute free periods and you didn’t write because that would be too hard to do in just 15 minutes. Stop.
Start working on changing the attitude. Writing is play. Writing is fun. Publishing is fun and challenging. You want to do it every moment you have free of every waking day.
Fascinating that the long-term writers I know never complain or put down their own writing. Only early stage writers do that. And if you can’t get past that negative outlook, you will never be a long-term writer.
Just the nature of the beast.