the pressure to “not be shit”

I’m in the final stages of writing EVIL PLANS. Got a thousand words or two left to write, then I send it off to my publisher.

Earlier today on Twitter I wrote:

Man… writing books is exhausting. The pressure to “Not be Shit” overtakes your life. *SIGH*

Kinda says it all. And I don’t think it just applies to books, either. Heh.

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  1. Randy Bosch says:

    Beats “Dare to be mediocre!” results and feelings!
    Suggestion: Go back and re-read your own stuff – it’s inspiring!

  2. Re-read my own stuff? Isn’t that cheating? ;-)

  3. It’s not cheating, it’s using your resources.

  4. Sounds like a new years goal if I’ve ever herd one :)

  5. Hugh, I love your work and I’m worried about you writing this book by wanting to only fill in the quota of words. This will not be your first book, which you took so long to formulate and write.

  6. “I’m worried about you wri­ting this book by wan­ting to only fill in the quota of words.”

    I’d say you should be worried, then. As this is exactly what I’m doing :D

    • Randy Bosch says:

      Glad you’re following George Orwell’s 5 Rules for Effective Writing, then:

      1. Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.

      2. Never use a long word where a short one will do.

      3. If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.

      4. Never use the passive where you can use the active.

      5. Never use a foreign phrase, scientific word, or jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.

      6. Break any of these rules sooner than saying anything outright BARBAROUS.

  7. Loved this post. My mantra before every audition I ever sang was “Don’t suck!” Now that I’m on the other side of the table hearing auditions, the mantra is still, inexplicably, the same (albeit with a different intention)…it’s hard to remember that even your critics want you to succeed, and to succeed wildly.

    But they do. And you will. Can’t wait to read the book!

  8. heh, I’m sure you’re not just piling on words for the sake of it…

    [been there, done that, threw 'em away: not worth it!]

    So…teaching granny to suck eggs:
    - your publisher wants a good book, not a long one
    - only you know how long the piece of string needs to be to tie the knot of creative satisfaction (or something like that)
    - so, yeah, write what you want. & what you want the book to be known for.
    If you’ve already done that, then stop.

    In the time it takes your publisher to absorb the text, if you have a killer final chapter in you, it’ll write itself.

  9. What’s the planned pub date for EVIL PLANS?

  10. Not that you should take my word for it, but I just read the part of your book (draft) that’s posted on this site and I must say I’m craving more.

    Number 2. Welcome To The Hunger, put into words what I’ve been feeling for quite some time now. Thank you for articulating what I couldn’t quite explain to anybody without them looking at me as if I were wearing a clown nose. I immediately printed that part and handed it to my husband. He set it to the tune of Welcome to the Jungle, so now you know what I’m dealing with.

    Anyway, my point is I doubt the rest of it will be shit — at least to those of us who are supposed to read it.

  11. Mark Essel says:

    Just be yourself Hugh. Somedays you’ll produce shit, somedays you’ll produce genius. Let everyone else worry about which. That judgement crap just weighs down your mojo.

    Be genuine, you can’t go wrong in the long run

  12. Very good post. I’ve found your site via Bing and I’m really glad about the information you provide in your articles. Btw your blogs layout is really messed up on the Chrome browser. Would be cool if you could fix that. Anyhow keep up the good work!

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