For many writers, the hardest thing about a project is getting started. When faced with a blank piece of paper or a blank Microsoft Word template and realizing they need to fill it with words that make sense, they panic.
Sometimes I find it hard to begin, too, but I can usually solve that problem by getting something down on screen, even if it’s not very good. Once I get started, the words begin to flow naturally. They may not all be the RIGHT words at first. But that’s OK. I can go back and edit again…and again…and again.
For me, the hardest part of a project is wrapping up. First of all, I’m almost never totally pleased with my writing. No matter how many times I’ve polished a piece, each time I read it I find new things to change and new ways to make it better. Thank goodness for deadlines. Without them, I’d probably never be able to let a piece of writing go.
The other challenge involved in wrapping up a project relates to the fact that when I’m preparing copy for outside clients, it isn’t done until they say it’s done. I may think the piece is perfect, but if the client doesn’t, it’s back to the drawing board.
I recently wrote an article that I thought had turned out really well. The client liked it, too—except for the lead, the sidebar, and one of the key examples. So now I’m wrapping up that project for a second time. When you’re a freelance writer, you have to curb your ego. It’s not about how you want something; it’s how the client wants it.
Isn’t that how life is as well? First, our parents and teachers tell us how they want things done. In college, our professors set the standards. In the work world, whether we are writers or engineers or lawyers, our bosses let us know when a project has been “wrapped up” to their satisfaction.
My only boss for this blog post is me. I’ve been through it a couple of times, rewording and reshaping it in places. If I let it sit for a few more days, I could probably make it even better. It’s time to post it, however, so I think I’ll “wrap up.”
Random Thought of the Week: We’ve all heard the phrase “snatching victory from the jaws of defeat.” After watching the Eagles and Phillies on Sunday, I think they’ve found a way to reverse that, with both teams “snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.” Oh, well, such is the life of a Philadelphia sports fan. Fortunately, the Phillies turned it around yesterday, and perhaps the Eagles will do so on Sunday.