The Perfectionism Trap

Submission for Off The Grid is in the hands of my lovely editor at The Wild Rose Press. Whew! It’s a romantic suspense (of course) and takes place in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. In an area called the Downtown Eastside which is notorious for being Canada’s poorest postal code. It’s the first book of my West Coast Trilogy. I’ve very excited about this story so fingers crossed.

My initial intention was to write a short story. Then it stretched into a novella. It now stands just shy of 60,000 words. And I’m good with it. And now I want to attempt to write it into a trilogy. I don’t what it is about a set of three books that I love, but I do. I’m not big on reading series. I get to about, well, book four and stop.

But I want to give the idea of a trilogy a go. So I have plans for two more books: Off The Ledge, and Off The Streets. Even though the idea scares the beejeebers out of me because…what if I fail. What if I can’t do it. What if I can’t make it right? Or weave the threads together? Or? Or? Or in other words, make it perfect?

But luckily inspiration came my way while I was editing Off The Grid. I read on a blog post by Kristen Lamb: 10 Ways for an ADD Writer to be OOH! SHINY!…Productive. I didn’t need to get past the picture to discover my new mantra.

The world doesn’t reward perfectionists; it rewards finishers. Kristen Lamb

It just so happens that Writer Unboxed has post today titled Good Enough by M.J. Rose about conquering perfectionism.

If we allow ourselves to remain at the mercy of our desire for perfection, not only will the perfect elude us, so will the good.” – Alex Lickerman, M.D. in Happiness in this World

The Harvard Business Review: How To Escape Perfectionism.

But the world doesn’t reward perfection. It rewards productivity. And productivity can only be achieved through imperfection. Make a decision. Follow through. Learn from the outcome. Repeat over and over and over again. It’s the scientific method of trial and error. Only by wading through the imperfect can we begin to achieve glimpses of the perfect.

check out The Feel Good Lifestyle blog and Pia Savoie’s post on From Perfection to Action: 5 Simple Tips to (Finally) Free Yourself from Perfectionism.

The allure of perfection is like a mirage. It cannot be achieved, because there is no final destination.

I’m going to work on the letting go of perfect when it comes to my writing. To strive for quality, but not at the expense of finishing. To try new approaches. To stretch my wings. To help others reach their dreams.

To imperfection.

To honesty.

To effort.

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