Don’t: Defeat Yourself

24 Jul

Do or do not There is no try.

Do or do not
There is no try.

It amazes me how much this little green Jedi has influenced my life with his wisdom. The line quoted in the picture above has been a bit of a personal mantra for me since I was knee high to a grasshopper (thanks in LARGE part to my grandmother who is a little obsessed with this diminutive Degoba dweller).

“Do or do not. There is no try.”

A more powerful statement in so few words has not been made in the history of ever. Entire books have been penned on this very matter and can be quite lucrative—Jordan Belfort, Author and Motivational Speaker, has a net worth of $100 Million.

How can people make so much money driving home such a simple idea?!

Well, it’s because most of us are hell bent and determined to give up before we even get going. How many times have you found yourself thinking, “How can I even compare with XYZ?” or “I’ll never be JK Rowling, so why even try?” My answer to this is simple: Stop trying and just DO it.

You may not ever be as successful as Rowling or Tolkien or even Stephanie Meyer, but if you don’t sit down at that keyboard and pound away at those keys, you’ll never know now will you?

The only way you’ll ever become a successful writer is to write. Every day. Even if it’s only a single page of garbage, at least you’re writing. Nobody produces perfection without practice. It’s just not possible. Stephen King was once quoted for saying

“When asked, “How do you write?” I invariably answer, “One word at a time,” and the answer is invariably dismissed. But that is all it is. It sounds too simple to be true, but consider the Great Wall of China, if you will: one stone at a time, man. That’s all. One stone at a time.
But I’ve read you can see that motherfucker from space without a telescope.”

It’s crude and unrefined (King isn’t one for “polite society”) but the man makes one hell of a point. It is WAY too easy to become overwhelmed when you sit down and say to yourself, “Okay! Only two hundred and ninety pages to go!”… Knock that shit off. Write a thousand words per day. End of story. Some days you’ll be hit by divine inspiration and kick out ten thousand words (and then crawl in a whole and die of emotional exhaustion for several hours), but I beg you: Write at least one thousand EVERY day. When I’m in creative mode, I average about 21 WPM. 48 minutes of my day to hit that one thousand mark is a very small price to pay for the sake of honing my talent. At that rate, I could have a word count worthy of a novel in 60 days.

Either do it or don’t. Just stop telling yourself that you’ll try it tomorrow.

As always, happy writing!


Posted by on July 24, 2013 in Literary Dos and Don'ts


Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

2 responses to “Don’t: Defeat Yourself

  1. Grandma

    July 28, 2013 at 8:10 PM

    Language, David, Language. An Yoda was right!

    • gavinmorningstar

      July 28, 2013 at 8:41 PM

      Grandma, don’t you start with me! If you want to complain that an absolutely creepy brilliant man swore in a quote, you write Stephen King a letter and tell HIM to watch his mouth! I only said “hell”… Geeze… Hahahahahaha!


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