I hate drafts. I hate that glaring number of posts sitting in the “Drafts” box. I suppose I’m impatient when it comes to projects. I would assume most students outline, draft, proofread, edit, and publish their work. I just write it. I like to think that I don’t need all of those steps — I just know what I want written and do it, not letting a single unpolished sentence slip onto the screen. I don’t let anything but perfection — by my own definition, which varies between tasks — escape my brain.
That paragraph up there? I’ll never read it again until I’ve published this post. I don’t need to. I already know there are no grammar mistakes or misspellings. I already know I’ve written exactly what gets my point across. Every sentence I type is a final copy. Maybe that makes me stubborn, but I’m straying from my original topic and would rather not waste more precious words defending myself.
Anyways, drafts. I can’t stand them. When I’m working on something great (again, by my own definition), I finish it. I get so excited over what I think in that moment will make me the next Robert Frost that it’s completed and published in a couple hours, sometimes less. So, when a piece of writing drags on for several hours, slips into the next day, and I still have no motivation or inspiration to finish it, that’s pretty defeating. It’s telling me that what I’m working on maybe isn’t that great; and then I question whether I’ll ever be as cool as Frost (pun intended).
Right now, there’s one poem in particular that’s got me down. I decided on this brilliant concept and started with what became the last two lines of the poem. Right now, those two lines, a total of thirteen words, fifteen syllables, are the absolute only part of the poem that I can deal with. The rest of what I have so far is all a load of cheese and corn. Now, you’re probably wondering, ‘I thought you only wrote perfection? Why would you allow yourself to write something that’s not perfect?’ Here’s the thing: my brain only knows so much. There’s bound to be a limit, with my current level of knowledge, to what I can think; and this pile of cheese and corn is the only way I can presently express what needs to be said.
When I’m already this discouraged, it’s difficult to find the motivation to fill in the blanks and get this thing out of my “Drafts” box. There’s a disclaimer at the top of the post that reads: “this is probably the lamest thing I’ve ever written.” I’m still contemplating whether or not I’ll keep it if I ever publish the darn thing.
I think sometimes I forget that I’m still a kid. I’m a work in progress, just like that poem. I’m not going to have the answers to everything — and I won’t always have the right words for every piece of writing. There’s still a whole lot of the world for me to experience, and those experiences will probably shape my writing. I’ll learn more words and feel more emotions. I’ll have real moments to pour into my writing. I won’t have to work so hard to pretend I know — I’ll just know, and then there will be no need to rely on cheese and corn.