I’ve been trying to finagle different phrases for myself and any future clients I’ll have as a coach. Because phrases stick with you and help you remember.
Remember PEMDAS from Order of Operations?
Please. Excuse. My. Dear. Aunt. Sally.
Parenthesis. Exponent. Multiply. Divide. Add. Subtract.
It was a cute and fun phrase to remember and something we never forgot as children…even if we never exactly used PEMDAS after graduation…I’m still salty about it (just like they lied about us with not using calculators post graduation). But I digress.
I think writers need that phrase or two to remind themselves of the greatness they’re building. I’m starting to think that Disney isn’t the only magical thing, nor is Hogwarts. Writers have a magic in them that’s unyielding.
More and more, however, I’m getting the sense that writers are becoming increasingly self-conscious. They think that they need to worry about the fanbase first, or what others will think. Having learned that this comes from anxiety and people-pleasing, confidently, allow me to try to ease some minds:
Write For You First. Polish It For Them.
We need to be in love with what we’re writing. Let others fall in love with what we’re building. Be a little selfish, write the story you’ve always wanted to read. The love from others will follow. The reader can feel the passion we put into our works. The way we write it, how we write it, the reader will know. Not to add pressure—not at all.
I say take ideas into consideration. But do not let it persuade or dissuade from your current mindset. If you are set on two characters being together, they have fantastic chemistry, or on their way to have a budding romance—taking a sharp turn because someone wants to see your MC get with the bad guy may throw everything you have planned off.
Yes, we all love enemies-to-lovers.
But if friends-to-lovers is your endgame, honey, roll with it.
Write. For. You.
You are where it starts and ends. I think we need to be a little more selfish in what we want. And it’s not the bad selfish where it’s affecting someone else. And it does come with some confidence and being a little braver. But these characters are our children.
Polish it so they have a beautiful copy to read. Polish it so they can tell you how amazing your story is and how it’s become their new favorite. All because you wrote it.