Write for yourself today

Anne Lamott quote

When was the last time you just wrote?

Without aiming for perfection, without criticizing yourself throughout the process, without intending to share it on your blog or Facebook?

I’ll admit, it’s been a while for me. Now, I have a hard time tuning out the editor in me because of it. I have a lot of ideas, but before I can finish jotting down my thoughts, I find holes in the logic or realize someone else has already said the same thing, but better. (Because surely, there’s no way I might have anything to add to the subject, right?)

But then I turn to my favorite writers for guidance, find the most perfectly fitting quote for my writer’s dilemma and go on with my life. (I can always count on you, Anne Lamott.)

Today, I won’t be writing for an audience. Today, I’ll write for myself. I encourage you to do the same.

What are some of your favorite quotes from writers? And how do you deal with feelings of inadequacy?

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  1. Shannon Butler says:

    Being around my boyfriend has helped me to be less critical of my writing because he is SO critical of his art. He starts off simple and then gets grander and grander ideas about how he wants it to look, and when it doesn’t match up with his thoughts, he gets so discouraged. But when I look at it, I think it’s amazing because I have NO idea how to draw like that! Then I think it must be the same with my writing…even when I think it sucks, it might just be exactly what someone else needed to hear.

    And even if everything has already been discussed before, it hasn’t been said in my voice yet.

    I watched Osage: August County the other day and it starts with one of the characters saying the T.S Eliot quote, “Life is very long,” and the character comments that it is a very obvious statement; T.S Eliot wasn’t the first to think it, but because he took the trouble to write it down, every time someone says it now, they attribute it to him! So I think, what if I were to take the time to write something down even if I think it is obvious or dumb or not good enough? People might end up quoting that long after I’m dead simply because I wrote it down first!

    • Cassie Paton says:

      Yeah, I always think it’s ridiculous when someone I’m close to who I KNOW is talented is hard on themselves. It seems so ridiculous to me. I should remember the same is true when it comes to my own work!

  2. I have been struggling with this lately. You got to write for yourself, or you will lose the passionate.

    • Cassie Paton says:

      It seems I go through phases of this. Some are longer than others, but when I’m in them, it’s as though I’ll never write anything good or original again. The inspiration DOES come back again, though. And it’s so satisfying when it does.

  3. The writing I really want to do for myself is journaling more often. I was doing it pretty consistently awhile ago but have fallen out of the routine, and it helps in so many ways. I love to look back and have a record of life’s ups and downs.

    • Cassie Paton says:

      I wrote in a journal (sometimes regularly, often irregularly) for YEARS, but haven’t done it for a very long time now. I do have my five-year diary, which helps with the revisiting memories part. But it’d be good to get out longer bits of personal writing more frequently, too.

  4. I’ve never actually written for myself. The first time I put words to a page (willingly, and of my own accord) was for my blog, and that’s what I’ve done ever since. Saying that, I do tend to take that to be writing for me, because I love doing it so much. However, maybe I’ll give handwriting stuff, for my eyes alone, a try 🙂

    • Cassie Paton says:

      That’s great you feel that way! I get the sense from your writing you’re ALWAYS speaking from the heart, and that’s really refreshing. Handwriting always feels great too, though. I mean, my handwriting is awful, but it’s still good for sparking more ideas and escaping to somewhere more comfortable than the desk. 🙂

  5. I never do this, and I need to, because it always gives me such relief. Also, Anne Lamott is da bomb.

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