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bear by san

March 2017

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can't sleep books will eat me

i only hear the singing

1500 words today on the welves, give or take. And I've been engaged in the auctorial pastime of updating my honeydew lists... and having one of those self-indulgent moments where it feels like it might actually be under control.

One of the things I've been meaning to chat about is the tendency of writers, and creative people in general, to really shit hard on themselves and their work. Stop me if this sounds familiar: Nothing you do is ever good enough; no daily wordcount is ever enough; no recognition is deserved...

Stop it.

Seriously.

Stop trash-talking yourself over your art.

That kind of unrelenting self-criticism is one of the best ways to (a) make it harder to work (human beings, like all mammals, respond to being punished by not wanting to do that particular thing again) and (b) eventually break your own creativity, if you keep it up for long enough.

There are enough people in the world who will tell you that anything you do is not up to their standards. No matter what you do, and no matter how hard you work at it.

Try giving yourself a cookie for good behavior now and again, instead. It works for pretty much everything.

We reward the behavior we want to see more of.

If you want to be more creative, don't punish your creativity. Reward it.



travel and appearances 2014:


October 31-November 2, 2014: ICON: Iowa City, Iowa (Guest of Honor with Scott)
November 14-16, 2014: Windycon: Lombard, Illinois (Guest of Honor with Squeecast)



2014:

Tiptree reading and judging

An Apprentice to Elves: Autumn 2014
"Gallowglas":  31 December 2014


2015+


story and ap content for Worldspinners: January 31, 2015

The Stone in the Skull:
September, 2015
Ancestral Night: February 2016
The Red-Stained Wings: March 2017
White Space #2: August 2017
The Origin of Storms: September 2018

Appearances 2015:

February 13-15: Boskone (Boston MA)
March 13-15: Tucson Festival of Books (Tucson AZ)
April 2-5: Minicon (Minneapolis MN)
May 9: CAPA U Writer's Workshop (Hartford CT)
June 25-28: 4th Street Fantasy (Minneapolis MN)
July 2-6: CONvergence (Minneapolis MN)
August 19-23: Sasquan (2015 Worldcon) (Spokane WA)
October 8-12: NYCC (NY NY)
October 18-24: Viable Paradise Writer's Workshop (Oak Bluffs MA)
November 4-8: World Fantasy Convention (Saratoga Springs NY)



No fixed deadline:

Smile (unless its name is actually Salt Water)
The Poison Tower
Unsuitable Metal
Patience and Fortitude


Untitled Gangland Urban Fantasy That Keeps Bugging Me
Untitled Bard troll story

"Tall Ships Go"
"A Time to Reap"
"Periastron"
"Posthumous Jonson"
"On Safari in R'lyeh and Carcosa with Gun and Camera" (It finally grew a plot!)
"Cecily"
"Coronado"
"Flush"
"Steel"
"Persephone Takes the A Train"

Comments

It's funny how easy it is to be kind to others, but how impossible it seems to be kind to myself. Thanks for posting this. <3
Yesterday I found myself missing your writing posts, and this I needed to hear today. Totally agree, find it strangely hard to do.
Yes. I'm so for the practice of kindness as part of honest self-evaluation. Leaving it out makes everything much harder.
"On Safari in R'lyeh and Carcosa with Gun and Camera" (It finally grew a plot!)

Oooooooh! :D
I know nothing about the business of beating up one's creative self. Nothing. Nada. Nope. Not me. Only it's kept me from writing/finishing anything substantial in, oh, two years? Yeah, yeah, the Guide to Combat signing is next week, but I was the editor, not a contributor. John Pitts says I get in my own way more effectively than anyone he's ever met. It's a distinction of a sort. I guess.
There are enough people in the world who will tell you that anything you do is not up to their standards. No matter what you do, and no matter how hard you work at it. Try giving yourself a cookie for good behavior now and again, instead. It works for pretty much everything.

Too true. Which is why I give myself all the cookies I can afford to give myself these days, amen.
Looking forward to seeing you at Windycon! I will be sure to get you some of my TEA! ribbons.
Ooh, what's The Poison Tower about?
You can train a pigeon to turn in a circle by steadily giving the pigeon a treat for every small move it makes in the direction you want it to turn. The pigeon will learn to turn in a circle in about fifteen minutes using this method.

No pigeon ever learned to turn in a circle by being yelled at or shamed.

I'm working on getting this method integrated into how I live my life.