Monday, December 13, 2010

I am on the verge of giving up…

The more I try and learn proper grammar, and storytelling. The more I feel it’s almost impossible for me. It is a hard thing to realize your dream, just might be, impossible to achieve.

I guess I have been living in denial this whole time. I just kept telling myself if I continue to write and try to learn basic grammar through videos and books, it would work out in the end… so far, I think I just might be too much to accomplish.

I wish the technical side of writing would come as natural to me as coming up with the stories has been.

I’ve finished my 98k word novel, and began the revising part, but now, it might find its way into the trash forever.

It just feels to daunting. I would give anything to go back and pay attention in school, instead of partying and ditching classes all the time.

I just hope my mind changes in the next few days.

Thx for stopping by.


  1. Dont' give up. Take a break maybe but don't give up.

    I didn't remember every little thing about proper grammar and the mechanics of writing when I started. I'm on my fourth novel. You'll get better as you go, learn more, and grow beyond what you expected on your writing journey.

    Keep going. You can do it. You'll get there.

    But take a break first. A nice break always helps and in more ways than one. :)

  2. Always - ALWAYS - take some time from when you finish a project before you start reviewing it. When you just finish something, it's too close, either hateful and horrible (especially if you struggled with the last bits) or perfect in every way. Either reaction is probably overreaction.

    You need distance and that takes time, time to be able to look at it with dispassionate eye and see what needs to be done to make it better. If the answer is "nothing" or "it's garbage," you might need a bit more time.

  3. Oh, Jeff, you need to just play. Play, play, play, play... and forget about the grammar completely.

    My advice? Write some poetry--free verse, no rhyme, no set rhythm, no purpose, no punctuation. Just get images down, without pressure.

    The pressure kills. It kills creativity, it kills your brain cells, it kills happiness. Take the next two weeks off and just play. Use words, yes, but don't kill yourself over them.

  4. Don't you dare give up! You think the grammar matters compared to the story you can tell? Not a bit! The advice above is sound. Never, ever start revising straight after you've finished--always let the story marinate a bit first. Take some time to play and relax, write free verse, write dialogue with nothing else around it, relax and enjoy!

    If you can write a 98K novel, then NOTHING is too much for you. Take it slowly, keep learning, and don't place too much emphasis on what you can't do. We always minimise what we can do, as if it's not that important or as much an accomplishment (because we think it's easy... it's not!) and we play up what we can't do, because it must be impossible.

    If you're as determined and impressive as you must be to finish a novel, then you can do all the things that come next.

  5. "Never give up! Never surrender!" It's my favorite quote from Galaxy Quest. Hopefully, the quitting feeling has passed.

  6. Thank you all, so much, it has helped a great deal.

  7. Don't give up. If you have a story to tell... don't let the frustration with the mechanics stop you. There are people out there who can help with the mechanics... Not everyone has a good story.


  8. DO NOT QUIT! We all have our little issues we must work through. Each of these problems CAN be worked out. Yours can too. Take a holiday break, then come back to that manuscript and fall in love again. No matter how many drafts it takes, it CAN be fixed!

  9. Hey Dude,
    I'm with you in the struggle. The more I learn, the more I realize I don't know squat. But I have a friend that is an author but used to be a newspaper editor and he reads my work ongoing and gives me pointers.
    The path you have chosen is not easy. If it were, half the people on the planet would be writers who are filthy rich. The other half would be songwriter/musicians.
    Just breathe and back away from the work and give your brain a rest.
    I'm with Julie, DO NOT QUIT!

  10. Don't quit it is your dream. Unless your dream changes keep working on it. If need be put it away for a little while and come back to it but don't throw it in the trash.

    Revising is hard work and you can learn the grammar but don't forget that people don't use perfect grammar in real life and they. Many people don't want to read a novel that doesn't mirror real life in that aspect. While you want to be careful you also need to relax a little.

  11. I'm sorry I'm so late to this...I've been terribly busy and fallen behind on visiting blogs. (also, warning, I haven't had my first cup of coffee yet, so excuse any typos or incoherentness that may follow)
    Jeff, what you have going on here, the feelings of not being good enough, being a hack, things taking too long, etc., is NORMAL.
    Every writer, including multiple-published authors, have felt and will sometimes continue to feel this way. (perhaps this is why so many writers have been known to drink heavily?)

    Also, now you know why I call it Revision Hell. It can feel daunting, for sure.

    Craft is a lifelong journey, requiring lots of study and being a guitar player. (Even Jimmy Page still practices every day and thinks he has room to improve.)
    You need to be patient with yourself and enjoy the process of learning...because we should be learning and growing until the day we die.

    Have fun with this. It's not a race nor is it a competition. Each of us are on our own personal journey. Grammar and mechanics are easy enough to fix, but as Lou above said so well, not everyone has a good story.

    Also, maybe all that partying back in school gave you good life experiences on which you can draw some bits of story and inspiration.

    Enjoy your journey and be kind to yourself, Jeff.