The Rough Draft

If you can't go through it. Go around it.


Fear is your body and mind’s way of keeping you in check. Essentially its a system designed to avoid pain. We don’t like pain, physical or otherwise. The trick in life most times is knowing something’s going to hurt, accepting that fact and doing it anyway.

Learn how to do this and you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. This is covered extensively in the book, The Tools by Barry Michaels. Give it a read, you won’t be sorry. But back to my point.

Fear will hold you back if you let it rule your life. It’s okay to be careful or diligent. It’s also a smart thing to plan for worst case scenarios. There’s no stigma in being prepared. A lot of my trip planning when it comes to off road stuff is about serious, “What ifs.” it’s why I have a satellite tracking unit on my bike and why I laid out the extra cash for the, “Helicopter rescue,” package. If I go big, I’d also like to go home.

Fear in writing though, that will hold you back too. You see we all have a tendency to self censor. We’ll pull our punches because something we’re writing makes us feel a bit weird to be putting, “That stuff,” on paper. Or we’re not sure something is the best it can be. For some writers it leads to years and years of rewrites for others it means never showing their work to any but a select few or anybody.

Which is sad.

The simple fact is, you’re never going to please everybody so simply start by pleasing yourself and once that’s done, clean up and write something that makes you happy or at the very least satisfied.

Now I’m not somebody who bangs a book out a month. I simply don’t have that sort of output but I can put one out every eight months to a year and that seems like a decent time frame for me. When I was writing screenplays you sometimes only had a few weeks to get that first draft of a project done and then it seemed that every rewrite after that was two weeks until you went to camera and then things really got interesting. The thing is pressure like that forces you to really step up your game and get the work done. There’s no time to be blocked when there’s a film shoot on the line.

There’s no reason writing a book should be any different. You set a deadline and you meet it. The only trick is knowing what stage you need to be at within the framework of the time allotted and who the crew is going to be to help you get there. Be it your editor, beta readers, etc.

Is it scary?


Does it feel like you’ve given yourself an impossible task?

Sometimes but so what? If this was easy everybody would be doing it. Oh wait, everybody is doing it.

So if you’re going to stand out, your quality should be high and your story tight.

Happy writing.

Please purchase my thrillers Devil’s Gambit and Reliance, available on Amazon in Trade Paperback and for Kindle.

You can also enter to win a copy of Reliance in my Amazon Giveaway. The Contest closes on Sunday.

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