Reader’s Question: How did you get noticed as a writer?

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Q: How did you get yourself noticed and your work out there? Did you ever feel like your writing wasn’t good enough?*

All writers feel like their writing is not good enough. If they didn’t, they’d never slave over it to make it better. To make it great, even.

At the same time, obsessing too much can be paralyzing. Hemingway wrote that every writer needs “a built-in, shock-proof shit detector,” which is true, but you need to make sure that shit detector has an off switch. (I wrote about this particularly important off switch here).

If I couldn’t turn off my inner (psycho) editor, I’d never be able to write out the pages of crap that, sometimes inexplicably, lead to something special. Don’t settle for mediocre writing in your final drafts; don’t worry about it in your drafts.

As for getting noticed, my best advice is to find other writers whose opinion you respect and to share your work with them. I do this “live” with my writers group, but a website like Figment.com is a great way to connect to other aspiring writers.

·*Question courtesy of the·National Writing Project·and readers of·Figment.com for the National Day on Writing. Read highlights of the event in·this post·or listen to me and four other guests talk about the National Day on Writing for the NWP blogtalk radio program·here.

 

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