Dear Indie Girl,
Don’t be afraid to write a bad song.
I used to be terrified of writing bad songs. And I still have a twinge of fear when I’m staring at a blank page, but ever since I started writing more regularly (everyday if possible, if not at least one day a week), I’ve learned to do it anyway.
I learned this from my husband, James Pray, who is a fiction writer. He is our main bread-winner working 40+ hours a week. Everyday after work he comes home, we eat dinner together, and he goes right back to work in his office working on his book. Everyday. He would write eight hours a day if we didn’t need… money. I’m so proud of him, and so inspired (and envious) of his work ethic!
So this got me thinking… so what if I write a bad song! It’s not the end of the world, right? Well it could be the end of your career if you stop there, so don’t stop there. Keep writing.
George Gershwin used to write 3 songs a day so he could get two bad songs out of the way and work on something really great.
What did George known that we have yet to figure out? Writing crap is part of being a writer. Not every idea is gold. Get over it.
Someone (I can’t remember who at the moment) once said, Don’t be afraid to write crap, it fertilizes the rest of your writing. (I’m paraphrasing)
Because that crap you wrote yesterday could hold a seed of an idea that starts a new song or book or blog post today. Inspiration is a fickle friend. Today you’re besties, tomorrow you’re “what’s-her-name”. So don’t hang your career on inspiration. It’s nice when she visits, but you know she won’t stick around.
Be willing to get your hands dirty and spread your crap ideas out all over the page, you’ll be surprised what beautiful things will come of it.
p.s. this is also written to my future self on the day I wake feeling like a failure, or I get a bad review, or something. Just get to work.