Just Do It or How I Learn to Stop Planning and Finally Write

I’m a planner.

If you ask my mom she’ll say I’ve been planning since I was in elementary school planning my birthday party. If you ask my friends they’ll tell you that I’m the one who has a plan for all of our outings. That is my thing and I’m proud of it.

But there’s also limitations to it.

For the longest, I’ve been wanting to do some more creative writing and write fictional stories rather than discussing what’s going on in media news or writing newspaper articles. I would painstakingly research the meanings of the names for my characters, look up all the writer resources my other writer friends would share on social media and just think about where the plot would go and how the characters would develop.

Unfortunately, that’s pretty much what they are. Plans. There’s nothing tangible that I have to show anyone be it a video, a podcast, a novel, or even a short story. And I had to ask why this was the case.

And that was fear. I was afraid of actually committing to doing something creative because I feared I wasn’t good enough. That my ideas were stupid and that I should stick to more nonfiction writing. The fears rattled in my brain for the longest without any basis in reality. An irrational fear at its finest.

Maybe it’s because of my age, seeing people my own age do their thing, or just getting tired of my own excuses. Whatever it was, I decided that the time to focus solely on planning had passed and now was the time for a tangible product as I opened up the Microsoft Word document and just started writing.

Now this isn’t to say that planning isn’t good. You need to have some sort of outline and idea of where your story needs to go. But if you focus too much on it and not enough time on doing then you’re just procrastinating making your work.

And yes, fear is a big factor and it can be hard to overcome. Especially if this is your first work. But you have to push through it, even if it looks terrible. You can always fix terrible and make it great but you have to have something to fix.