Everything we writers put on paper begins with a single, practically meaningless, out-of-context sentence.
I know, lots of writers are probably thinking “that’s total bulls**t,” but hear me out. Everything we write begins with a sentence, regardless of eloquence or structure, that needs to be built on. Ideas are not conveyed via a single sentence, sometimes they aren’t even communicated through an entire paragraph.
A single sentence, standing alone in all its glory, can inspire and ignite the fires of creativity without ever being aware of doing so. So just write it. Put your fingers to the keys, or the pen to the paper, and start with that simple sentence.
After nearly two decades of failed attempts to write a single piece of literature I’ve cone to realize a simple fact. It’s not perfect. It never will be, and it’s important to accept that. We edit, revise, edit, revise, and edit again, seeking some semblance of perfection that it completely unattainable.
We compare our work to our favorite authors, or literary heroes, hoping to live up to the example they set. Yet we forget the biggest fact about these individuals we idolize. They’re human. Just like us. They weren’t perfect, just as we aren’t perfect. Undoubtedly, every single one of them had that moment of frustration or doubt that we all share. In spite of all the frustration and self-doubt they still managed to produce a piece that moved, spoke to, or inspired us to become writers.
I know it’s scary. We cannot create a character, emotion, scene, or dialog without putting pieces of ourselves onto the page. That is where the magic happens in writing! We are catching a glimpse into the author’s soul and seeing through their eyes while we devour their work. That’s what makes it moving for us!
Don’t be self-conscious, don’t doubt your writing ability, and don’t put off writing for another day where you might “be in a better place.” Write today. Put that sentence on the paper and see where it leads you. As a writer, you are privy to seeing the story unfurl before anyone else! If you’d read it, then someone else will!
Your world is waiting to be discovered.