Friday, January 9, 2015

I Quit. No, Learn Instead.



On Facebook, I saw, "I quit." It was a post (not entirely serious) by a poet I admire and envy. She had just finished reading a selection of poems written by someone she admires and now, envies.

What happens to us as writers when we see work we appreciate, work we recognize as talented and finely wrought? We allow ourselves to be intimidated, to sense despair, if we feel we don't measure up. If we feel our writing career or our abilities lag behind the next writer's, we berate ourselves. 

What a waste of energy!

There is room in the world for all of our unique stories and poems, our varied abilities. We should allow ourselves to be inspired, expanded by the amazing diversity of voices, rather than diminished by it.

When we learn from writing we admire and yes, envy, our work becomes richer through exposure to another style and voice, this fresh way with words.

Our writing becomes better.

7 comments:

Janice Maclean said...

Thank you, Carol. These are honest words and I needed to hear them.

Janet Martin said...

thank-you! I give you a standing ovation. We all need to be reminded of this.

Janet Martin said...

p.s. if its okay I would like to print this and take it to our next writer's group meeting.

Carol Steel said...

Hi Janice, thanks for visiting. I need to remind myself of this learning instead of envying all the time. A constant lesson for me.

Carol Steel said...

Hello Janet. Yes, please share. I think as writers and poets, we need reminding to be OK with where we are at this moment. It's a journey, an evolution in abilities and understanding for each of us.

Fireblossom said...

When I read amazing work by someone else, it makes me feel challenged and competitive, in a good way. I feel like i want to go out and write something marvelous, too.

Carol Steel said...

Hi Fireblossom. Most of the time that's how I feel too. Wow, I want to write like that. There are days when I have the other reaction, too, so have to talk to myself a bit then. And get writing...