1) Be patient. When I was 23 I always felt this absurd need to draft quickly, edit very little, and send out the piece immediately. Just because you finished a 3,000 word story doesn’t mean you should submit it to the New Yorker an hour later. The time away from a piece of writing is time spent on the piece of writing.
2) It’s okay to not be writing. Guilt can be a motivator, sure, but when that guilt is clouding your story and ideas and generally fucking with you in a way that pushes you to write badly, it’s time to stop. I’m all for working hard and pushing through, but learn to forgive yourself and walk away sometimes. I once went an entire year without writing and it felt good.
3) Listen to editors who reject your work. Seems easy to just read a rejection and think, “fuck…
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