For real, can we cut with the 2016 is the worst year ever crap? Yeah a bunch of old rich famous people (most of us never met) died and there was that Trump bullshit. But in all honesty, is it really that surprising? This shit is Bush/Gore all over again and politics are always brutal.
Happy or sad, this year gave more opportunities and a shit ton of subject matter to write the hell out of. We have more comforts and hidey holes than ever. 2016 wasn’t a “bad” year. It was good for some and bad for others, but we’re here. Those of us who are still alive can still create and spread the love doing what we do best.
Sit still and be fucking forgotten or move forward and keep giving people a reason to care.
I’m all revved up because my writing hiatus is over and the words are flowing. They always do, but there is less pressure when you come off a break. Taking on a freelance editing position with one of my publishers doesn’t hurt either.
You wanna get your shit out there? Want to be the best? Grow your skills. Keep learning and teach while you do so.
That whole “Teachers are those who can’t do” bullshit is such a joke. Maybe teachers in the public school sense, but those of us who respect the importance of spreading knowledge understand that the best lessons don’t come from a classroom or textbook.
Beta reading and reviewing books by other authors has taught me more than I ever learned in English class. My tech writing job has given me an eye for patterns and common mistakes. Reading the greats helps, but reading shit is where you really learn to pull yourself up from the muck and ascend to greater things.
I’ve edited shitty works and some great stuff. My current project has it’s challenges, but there is a deeper appreciation of the process because I’m not afraid to admit when I stink and fix what needs to be fixed. I started out with the shittiest drafts so I know what stinks. My work is still far from the best. But my eye is trained and I am glad to prevent others from making the same amateur moves that took me down a longer road than necessary.
It’s easy to say, “That’s just my style” when an editor wants to make changes to your work-it’s also a fucking cop out. “Shitty” is not a style. “Wordy,” “Long-winded”, “cliched”, “Juvenile”, “Boring”: these are not styles and they’ve been done before. Writing has to evolve with the readers. Cut out the fat, keep them engaged, and make them think. You do that and you’ve got the formula down.
I hate marking up drafts, especially other people’s. A lot of writers are open to constructive criticism and willing to learn. For those that get defensive over rejections and suggestions, I get it. I’ve been there. But the seasoned author who keep their following are the ones who get over that and accept that arrogance doesn’t touch hearts.
We still have 12 days left this year and I don’t intend to waste em. Let’s get on it and push out more. Do what we do best. Don’t buy into this defeatist “2016 was terrible” bullshit. People who have bad years always seem to have bad years. Make it better.