This week I struggled with a writing assignment that should have been easy. It wasn’t. A friend who proofreads some of my writing for me told me the last few writings she’s proofed were sentence-y. I had no idea what she meant the first time she used the very professional term. She told me it lacked a conversational tone. It was just not something she wanted to read. I love that she is so honest. Truly. How else can my writing improve?
Since she has said this few times about different writing projects, I endeavored this week to write less sentence-y. I worked hard on this assignment. I was conscious of every word I used and the flow. I thought I did a decent job and sent a very rough draft for her to read to determine if it was headed down the sentence-y path.
I was seriously having doubts about my writing ability. She responded with how much she loves my coffee posts. They are creative and conversational. In essence, they are fun to read. So, she asked me what happened to that.
I don’t know. I don’t really try to write those. The words just come and I type them out.
She told me maybe I should just do that.
Can it really be that easy, and that hard? I often self-edit. I don’t always think my writing is acceptable for the masses. I suppose it doesn’t have to be, but when I am writing for a paid gig, I feel like I should try a little harder. Maybe I overthink my writing.
The fact that I spent most of my life believing myself to be a writer but not really writing anything, is an indication that I didn’t believe fully in my ability. I need to let myself go. I need to let the words flow.
Yes, I just rhymed.
Another problem is that I don’t like to put myself out there. As a writer, you have to be willing to do just that. I struggle with it every time I publish a new blog post and every time I do any type of self-promotion.
After she very nicely told me my writing was crap and I had my bout with self-doubt, I sat back down at my keyboard and tried again. I read my article and her thoughts and I started over.
This time, I just wrote what I wanted, how I wanted. I sent my friend the revised version and waited anxiously for her response.
The next morning, I got a text, “Only two sentences in and I already like it a lot better.”
When she finished it she sent, “I like! Well done! Now keep that feeling for next time.”
If only it was that easy. Sometimes writing is just hard.
Thanks to my friend at myjourneytotheflinthills.com for always giving me great feedback!*
*She didn’t proof this one, so if there are mistakes, it’s all me!