Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Naturally Good

Last summer after one of my soccer games where I played really well (scored 3 goals), my daughter who happened to be there, said to me. "Have you always been naturally good at soccer?"


My mind immediately went back to a video my husband made of my first game ten years ago, where I completely missed the ball and almost landed on my butt.


"No," I said. "Mom had to work really hard just to be able to kick a ball without falling over."


The same goes for writing. I honestly used to think that because I wanted to be a writer, I would just be able to, but that was when I was young and naive. Now I know differently. Writing takes work, lots of hard work. Even if you know grammar, proper punctuation, and sentence structure, doesn't mean you know how to write a good story. Yes, there are some people out there who have a natural way with words, but they still have to learn how to pace a book, develop characters, and keep the reader's interest.


I’m kind of word hoarder. I keep all of my drafts just so I can that I've improved. Just like that video shows me that I'm a much better soccer player.


So take a look back this week and see just how far you've come in your writing.


No post on Friday since it’s Easter and I’ll be spending some much needed time with my family.
Happy Easter everyone, hope you get to share it with loved ones.

22 comments:

Lynn said...

I completely agree that we do need to look back to measure how far we have come, and to be grateful for where we are today. Happy Easter!

Laura Pauling said...

I hold onto all my manuscripts because I'll never know when I might revisit it. But it's nice to look back and see how we've improved too. Have a good time with the f amily!

Robyn Campbell said...

Geez Patti, when I look back to my first books, I go *gag*. I have come along way. And I hope the distance I have left to travel is a bit shorter than where I've come from.

I kept that first draft of my MG novel, just so I could get a laugh from time to time. *wink*

Happy Easter. my friend. EAT tons and tons of jelly beans and chocolate. (If you eat a salad for lunch, it will all even out.)

Chantele Sedgwick said...

I love looking at old drafts as well. It's amazing how different your book turns out when it's finally finished. :) Have a good Easter!! Enjoy it!

Carol Riggs said...

Happy Easter to you and your family, too!! And you're right; we should always take a look at how far we've come in our writing journey. I know I HAVE improved. And that's a good thing! :)

Jessica Nelson said...

Eeek, I'm afraid to open my first attempt at a manuscript! LOL
Happy Easter!

Holly Ruggiero said...

I save all my drafts too so I can look bad and say, “A HA, I am getting better.”

Janna Qualman said...

What a good lesson!

Shannon O'Donnell said...

Oh. So. True. When I first started I thought, "I'm a writing teacher. I know how to write. I can do this."

NOT. LOL. :-)

Stina Lindenblatt said...

One of my CP told me yesterday that she's amazed how far my writing has come since my last novel. *kisses Donald Maass's workbook like crazy*

Jessie Oliveros said...

Sometimes when I read old writing (and hate it) I'm afraid that in another year I'll look back at what I'm writing now and feel the same way.

LTM said...

great point, and so so true. I've seen my own writing just get better with each MS, and I'm actually scared to go back and look at that very first novel. :D keep on swimming~

Jennifer Hoffine said...

Yeah, my first book is awful...sparks of good in there, but mostly covered up by crap. It is good to look back and see improvement.

ali said...

How great that you have set such a wonderful example for your children! I hope I've done that too.

Happy Easter to you!

Melissa Marsh said...

I've kept all my manuscripts since I started writing so very long ago. It's fun to look back and see how I used to write compared to now.

Great post!!!

Happy Easter!

Angela Ackerman said...

Word hoarder--I like that!

I keep all my drafts too, but just because I always worry I might not like a change and need to go back to an earlier draft. It's never happened tho.

And yes, writing is hard, hard work.

Angela @ The Bookshelf Muse

Angela Felsted said...

I like your attitude. Work is the key. Happy Easter.

Kasie West said...

Totally true. Writing is work. Hard work. That's why you have to love it too. :)

Becca Puglisi said...

I also thought when I first started that I could write a book simply because I knew grammar and got A's in Advanced English. Isn't it funny how so many people think this? But people don't think they can play professional football because they can throw, or become a musician because they can read music. It's a little whacky, imo. ;)

Becca @ The Bookshelf Muse

Heidi Willis said...

Happy Easter Patti!! I hope you are enjoying a ton of great, relaxing family time!!

And congrats on coming so far - both in soccer and writing. That hard works pays off. :)

Monica B.W. said...

You know what I think? Lawyers and doctors and architects, etc,take years to graduate. Why wouldn't writers take years to polish their craft too?
Great post! :D

Aubrie said...

Just like playing the flute! You can have natural talent, but without the hard work you won't succeed.

Great post and thanks for stopping by my blog to say congrats!