Debbie Kahl – YA & Children's Fiction Writer

{July 31, 2010}   Self Doubt vs The Writing Process

I love writing… I love creating new characters and absorbing myself into a unique and original world that only I can understand and visualise (well for the moment anyway)… I just wish I had more faith in my abilities.

Unfortunately, the journey of creativity is fraught with challenges and one of them just happens to be self doubt. I can’t tell you the amount of times I’ve stared blankly at my laptop, willing words to come, before turning around and deleting them just as quickly as they’re typed. And I’m sure I’m not the only writer who feels this way. In fact, the more I think about it, the more I believe that perhaps it’s the self doubt in our ability that keeps us honest and compels us to try just that little bit harder. And funnily enough, what seems silly and a waste of time one day, actually isn’t too bad when you read it again with fresh eyes and a new attitude.

The best advice I’ve ever been given as a writer was to ‘just write’. Sit down, get the words on the page and go from there. It’s much easier to work with a bunch of words and play around with them once they’re there, than to try and work with a blank page.  Simple right? If only! Still, we persevere on our journey because some day, somewhere, someone might just think what you write is pretty awesome. And there’s no better feeling than that! Or so I’m told??? 😉

Have a great week everyone & good luck with your writing! Don’t let the self-doubt creep in! x


Kev Webb says:

Deb, I don’t think there is a writer in this world who hasn’t struggled with self doubt at on time or another. I had completed my first novel and then went and did a writers course. “Well Durrrrr!” Seriously I look back at that now and think you idiot, what the hell was you thinking. But it all came down to lack of self confidence.

Even today I still get pangs of self doubt especially when I’m in the company of other writers, it can be unnerving. Trust your own instincts, don’t delete, you could be deleting your finest work and no one would ever get to see it. That is far sadder than self doubt.

Thanks Deb, for this very honest Blog on self-doubt. I have self-doubt in every step of my writing journey especially on how other writers perceive my writing. We writers are human and self-doubt is part of the roller coaster ride of The Writers Journey.
Deb, You have no need for self-doubt. Your writing is brilliant. Keep on keeping on. Karen :))

Deb, just imagine you are telling a story to a bunch of little kids. It doesn’t matter much until AFTER you have told it – get the words on the page THEN work on fixing it up!

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