I like to play with fire when it comes to writing on a deadline. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been a serial procrastinator, waiting until the last minute something is due before finishing it. Sometimes I don’t even start until the night before.
I’ve always been told how much easier it is to not procrastinate and that I would be prouder of my writing if I just took more time on it.
However, recently I was able to put that idea to the test. In a writing class last quarter, I was working on an original comedy script. At first, I tried writing my pages for the week in advance. I’m not a naturally comedic person, so I was conscious of the challenges I would face in the class.
These challenges presented themselves to me quite quickly. I wasn’t funny, the structure of my episode wasn’t working, and I was struggling to find the voices of my characters. At first, I thought comedy just “wasn’t my thing.” And then, one fateful week, I got really busy.
I believe it was Pulitzer Prize winner Kendrick Lamar who once said, “Sit down, be humble.”
After spending a few years in the writing and editing business, I believe that any and all creators should live by those words. Because nobody likes a jerk, even if they’re talented.
I started writing at a young age, so luckily my over-inflated ego disappeared with my immaturity and naivete about the writing business. The time I stopped believing my sad poem about the 16-year-old boy who didn’t like me back was Art, was the same time I realized I wasn’t hot shit. However, I often come across writers older than me that believe their writing is perfect, untouchable even. They resist any feedback because who could dare change their words?
I’ve even had a writer flat out reject my edits to their grammar mistakes. The usage of a question mark isn’t really debatable. But here we are.
There aren’t enough hours in a day.
Here at Craft Your Content, someone is always working. I mean that literally. After combining the hours of our team of approximately 10 members, we put in the same number of hours that are in a week. Not work hours, mind you, real human hours. 24/7.
On a closer look, Elisa Doucette, our founder, works 35 percent of those hours, followed by Managing Editor Julia Hess and I (content producer) combined at another 30 percent, and then the rest of the team at the remaining 35 percent.
While that’s still pretty top-heavy, we’re at a better place than we were in 2017 thanks to the art of delegation.
You only need to look at Elisa’s hours to know that running a business is more than a full-time job. One that you absolutely cannot do alone.
It’s an absolute necessity that anyone who wishes to write must read, and read a lot.
Not only is reading proven to improve your writing and help you learn, but reading also exposes you to creative methods you may not have been aware of before. That goes for any creative media. The more you consume, the more you learn and grow as a writer.
For instance, without reading poets like Walt Whitman or Emily Dickinson, I would have never known that some of poetry’s greatest works contain zero rhymes. Without watching Memento, I would have never realized that time doesn’t have to be linear in the films I create.
Consuming media doesn’t just teach you, it shapes you.