Tracy Hickman on Writing Excuses (LTUE)

Tracy Hickman: “Writers basically believe that they are never going to be or are already has-beens. The thing I try to tell writers all the time, and I have to remind myself is that we have not yet written our best work. The best is yet to come. It could be that next book, it could be two books away, but it’s in our future because every time we write we improve our craft. Every time we put word to page we improve our craft.

The fact of the matter is the first books you write are not going to be good. They just aren’t, ok? Sorry.That’s just how it is.

The first book I wrote was in fourth grade, I decided that the way that you wrote a book is that you kept writing a little more every day, and when you had enough pages you had a book. So I wrote this book about a destroyer that went to the South Pacific and was attacked by 50 planes and sank – on page 2. I had writer’s block in fourth grade, I didn’t know what to do with it, I mean – the boat sank. The boat was the main character, man!

I tried to fix it, writing on that big chunky paper with those dotted lines so that you didn’t go too far with those little letters – but I couldn’t do it. The point is that your first stuff isn’t going to be as good as the second,  and the second thing you do is never going to be good as the third. You make rag shoes to begin with, and the second thing is going to be better. You just have to keep going.”

Guest Starring on Writing Excuses at Life, the Universe, and Everything. (Season 2 Episode 24)


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