Sitting down

The Scourge of Perfectionism

The Scourge of Perfectionism

The Scourge of Perfectionism Perfectionism is common among writers with inhibitions. Whenever they write, whatever they are writing, be it a literary essay or a thank you note, they want it to be perfect in every way—all the right, no best –words, punctuation and content. […]

The Myth of Inspiration

The Myth of Inspiration

Most of the writers I’ve worked with share a common misconception about inspiration. Before we work together, they believed that they couldn’t just sit down and begin writing. They thought they needed to feel “inspired.” When I ask these clients what inspiration means to them, […]

How to Talk to Your Internal Writing Critics

How to Talk to Your Internal Writing Critics

Here’s a first for me: A short talk on how to talk to your internal writing critics. Hope you find it helpful.

What Are We Really Afraid Of?

What Are We Really Afraid Of?

The topic of critics is complicated. Most people who struggle with writing inhibitions can think of a family member, friend or teacher who has said unkind words about their writing. My first critic was my fourth-grade teacher, Mrs. Lauck, who criticized me even for the […]

Dealing with Your Nasty Internal Critics

Dealing with Your Nasty Internal Critics

Who cares what you say? You’re a lousy writer! Nobody’s going to read your book. You should be doing something more productive with your time. Writing is selfish. These are just a few of the insults many of the writers I work with hurl at […]

Rewards for Writing

Rewards for Writing

These days writing is its own reward for me. Even if it hasn’t been a fabulous writing day—if I’ve felt a bit stiff, or the words have been slow to find their way to the page—I feel good about having written because I’ve honored the […]

Diving Deeper

Diving Deeper

Reading Ann Patchett’s delightful collection of essays, “This Is the Story of a Happy Marriage,” I was reminded of what I call “diving deeper” into moments in my writing. When Ann creates a metaphor or offers a musing, instead of quickly moving on to the […]

Focussing on Small to Keep Writing

Focussing on Small to Keep Writing

When we are engaged in a writing project, it’s only natural that we think about the whole, from the very first to the very last words. We were taught to do this as early as junior high school, when we learned to write the five-paragraph […]

The Trouble With Deadlines

The Trouble With Deadlines

Recently, one of the writers I’m working with was given a deadline to produce a document needed by a colleague. “Having a deadline feels like a relief,” she admitted. “Even if I have to stay up all night, I know I’ll get the writing done.” […]

Following My Own Advice

Following My Own Advice

I’ve been needing to heed my own advice these days. As I find myself with a book to appear in the fall, paradoxically, I also find myself not writing. In all my years of creating books and essays, I’ve never before experienced this void. I […]