Being a beginner is not easy. There really is only one way to find out if you can do something or not and that’s to dive right into it. Sometimes I try a new trick and I surprise myself; it was easier than I thought. Other times, I try a new trick and flail about, get tissu burn on my legs and hit the crash mat. Then there are the skills, like climbing, that I thought I had mastered only to discover that there’s more to learn to make it look graceful and neat. The learning process just never ends.
The last ‘new hobby’ I got into was writing. It’s been a while since I started and I had completely forgotten what I was like in the beginning. Somedays, I feel like I’m writing the Neverending Story and I need to stop and look back at my progress. I find the best way to do this is by reading my old stories. It doesn’t matter if it’s a short story from my Uni days or a draft chapter from two months ago, the difference is always shocking to me.
Learning circus is a combination of fear, pure awesomeness, frustration and pain. Learning to draft and edit a novel was (and still is) the same. Some days I am the godess of editing and other days I stare at my computer for an hour, hoping that my brains will kick in. I don’t believe that these feelings disappear after the first or the thirteenth book. There is always more to learn.
For me, it’s just important to remember that I am making progress, even if it’s only a teeny shuffle. So if you feel like you’re going around in circles, just read through your old writing. It may be painful but you’ll notice the difference.