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Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Defining a "perfect" distraction

Perfection is one of the most, well, perfect writing distractions. It is well suited for the creative person shaping and molding. After all, don't we all want something we create to be perfect?
How many of us write a draft, only to find ourselves stuck over a word, a phrase or the perfect shade of ink. We're seeking, searching for something perfect.
One of the elements in improving our own writing is to move past some of the distractions that crop up. Wrestling with perfection seems to work against what we truly want to do.
But what is perfection, really? Who dictates what is perfect?
One of my graduate school professors discussed The Great Gatsby as the perfect novel.
I have some perfect novels in a desk drawer, but a few literary agents didn't think them so perfect.
The Great Gatsby, my professor explained, may be perfect, but it is a flawed perfection because no writing can be absolutely flawless.
That's what keeps me at my computer tapping away or taking hours to scratch out my ideas in my notebooks. The search for perfection, even with some marred facets. Do I think I'll attain perfection in my writing? I don't know.
I do know that I won't let it get in the way of my sitting down to write.
How about you? What are your biggest internal distractions when you look at the blank page in front of you?

Elizabeth King Humphrey is a writer and creativity coach. Besides contributing to AOL's ParentDish, she blogs at The Write Elizabeth, delving into creativity in everyday places.

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Blogger By W. J. Howard said...

Boy, this post popped out at me from my reader this morning. Research is currently my distraction, trying to settle on just the right myths on the origin of evil to complete the ending of one novel and start the next.

7:00 AM  

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