Thursday, February 01, 2007

Self-Doubt Demons

Today I’m battling demons.
Hideous, scary monsters I call the Demons of Self-Doubt.
The ugly side of writing.

I’ve been sitting at the computer reading the first few chapters of my work in progress. All the while, my demon torments me and turns my gut into knots with whispers of . . . this is crap . . . you’re an untalented hack . . . just delete it all and start from scratch . . . and other derogatory words not fit for a PG rated blog.

I’ve tried my usual way to soothe and comfort my inner spirit at these times:
- I’ve been reading a book by a favorite author.
- I’ve soaked in a bubble bath until I’m a prune.
- I’ve gone to Starbucks to eavesdrop on the problems of others but everyone seemed surprisingly chipper today. Damn them.

Since the last three didn’t work it’s time for the big artillery. It’s time to buckle down and just do the writing anyway. Ignore the Self-Doubt Demon and push aside his cousin (Procrastination).

How do the rest of you handle that nagging inner voice that tries to drag you down?


Jana DeLeon said...

Hum loudly???? God, I wish I knew since I have the same problem. (sigh) I think we all do. Not sure there is a cure but I like the listening to other people's miserable lives - I do that one too. :)

Wendy Roberts said...

Good to see you, Jana!

Guess there's something about knowing you're not the only one in the world with troubles ...

ORION said...

I was that noise you heard sneaking behind, following you back from Holly's blog!
Yeah those demons.
Like my golfing. I'm either brilliant or I suck. No in between.
My writing feels like that right now.
I'm just chipping away at that WIP and maybe I'll have enough that I can edit out the crap!
One can always hope.

Wendy Roberts said...

Hey Orion, thanks for following me LOL.
Good luck chipping away. We're word sculptures, aren't we? Hacking off what doesn't work and smoothing out what does.

Rachel Vincent said...

Oh, man, doubt is my biggest, scariest demon. Worse than any monster I could invent. He usually leaves me alone during the rough draft, then takes huge chunks out of my confidence during the rewrites.

And, unfortunately, I lack impulse control when I'm battling that particular demon. I tend to write my poor agent and editor, or my CP, begging for the truth. Do I really suck? Did I use up all my paltry talent in that one book? Is this the end of the world as I know it?

So sad. I'm sure they're laughing at me, but so far everyone seems to have the good grace to do it behind my back. Or so the demon tells me. ;-)

Wendy Roberts said...

Rachel, I'm usually too afraid to ask my fellow writers, agent or editor because I'm afraid they'll just say, "Why, yes, as a matter of fact you DO suck."

*sigh* that darn demon strikes at every turn!