Friday, 2 May 2014

Two sides of the same coin

But have you ever tried to look at both sides at once?  Go ahead, I'll wait.

No, I can't either.  I can carry that coin in my pocket, wear it on a chain around my neck, pull it out and contemplate it as often as I like, I can still only actually SEE one side at a time.  The other side is always there, I always know it, but...  All I can do is flip it over regularly.

And when you think about it, that's not necessarily a bad thing.

I pulled out the manuscript of my first novel the other day to get an idea of how hard I would have to work to bring it up to publishable standards.  And I fell in love with the darn thing all over again.  I kept saying, "I wrote that?" And glowing a bit. For a while I believed I actually had some talent.

Then I tried to work at my current manuscript.  And I felt like it stunk.  Granted, it's still at first draft stage and the first manuscript has been through several rounds of editing.  And there you have it, the two sides of the coin.  When I feel like I can't produce anything worth reading, I need to flip the coin and remember the proof that I can.  When I feel like a genius, I need to flip the coin and remember how hard I struggled to produce something worth reading.

And this applies to a lot more than writing or even evaluating our own capacities.  I'll bet you can think of two or three ways you can apply this in the real world, in your creative endeavours, wherever.  Tell me about it.

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