Today I wanted to address an insecurity that I've had and know that many other writers have had. For me, I am most confident with my plot and doubt myself when it comes to the actual stylistic elements. For example:
"Does this sentence sound right?"
"Is my description vivid?"
"Is this too dry?"
Although that stuff so SO important, what I'm finding makes a huge difference in my writing is tension management. I first heard that term over at Go Teen Writers (great blog btw) said by Marlo Schalesky. It was like a light bulb going off in my head.
I don't have to worry myself so much that it's hard to put a pen to paper over small things like sentence structure. The more nitty-gritty stuff can be edited later, but I do need to worry about tension in my scenes. Worrying about the pull between two characters (or some other force) in a scene is much more manageable than worrying about the small things that can be so overwhelming in the first draft. It really does produce better results and page turning content. This is a great post talking about tension and how to apply it.
So what am I trying to say? Forget about the small stuff -don't get held up on your insecurities- and focus on the big things like tension management when you're writing your first draft.
What I'm reading: Bitterblue by Kirstin Cashore and The Year of Living Biblically: One Man's Humble Quest to Follow the Bible as Literally as Possible by A.J. Jacobs
What I'm listening to: Owl City's All Things Bright And Beautiful
What I'm watching: Abby and Brittany