HELP!!

I keep writing my chapters over and over again. I can’t be satisfied with what I write no matter how much I try, and because of that, I don’t update. HELP!!!

What have you tried so far?

Outlining? Setting the mood with music? Starting a different story? More details would be helpful :slight_smile: .

1 Like

I guess you are stuck in chapter 1. You want it to be very good, but you just cannot make it good enough.

My suggestion is that you just keep writing until chapter 5, don’t post them, then you go back to chapter 1 and fix it. Only when your story is taking shape that you really know what is the best way to write chapter 1.

2 Likes

:point_up_2:

Yep.

3 Likes

You are me. I’m literally like this most of the time. But one thing I constantly have to remind myself is that it’s okay to post an imperfect, unsatisfactory chapter. Because the great thing about Wattpad is you can go back and edit your work whenever you like and I think, when you do too much self-editing before you post your chapters, you end up becoming over critical. Sometimes things aren’t as bad or unsatisfactory as you think they are.

Maybe try writing a chapter without reading back what you write, and then leave it for a day. Just let it be. Then read it again but don’t judge it too intensely. You’ll probably find a few areas which you’re not happy with, but instead of changing the problem areas straight away, make a note of it in a draft document off Wattpad - I like to have a word doc where I highlight sentences or paragraphs I’m unsure about and comment on them - and apply the edit at a later stage. Sometimes, after much longer time has passed, you might end up realising that what you originally wrote was okay the way it was.

2 Likes

Keep writing the story. Don’t concern yourself of fixing it first. Finish the entire story first and then its time for the edits. Don’t post unless you finish the story. Sometimes it happens that in the middle of the story, you get the hang of it so you’d know what to fix it.

1 Like

Blockquote I guess you are stuck in chapter 1. You want it to be very good, but you just cannot make it good enough.
My suggestion is that you just keep writing until chapter 5, don’t post them, then you go back to chapter 1 and fix it. Only when your story is taking shape that you really know what is the best way to write chapter 1.

So much this. Your story is going to change on you no matter what you do because you are going to write something that you really want to see how it plays out and off the rails it’ll go. Really write more of the story because you could spend forever editing that first chapter and then in the second things will change and you’ll have to go back and edit the first and that’s just no way to go about this whole writing thing.

I don’t even bother editing until the first draft is done and complete, it is far easier to edit a complete work and redo parts you’re unhappy with once you have a complete story.

2 Likes

I started a new story and Im super motivated to finish it. I just can’t be satisfied with what I write, I mean I have all the scenes in my head with every detail, but when I write it it’s never how I wanted it to be… I guess it’s my english :weary:

That’s a really good idea. Thank you so much!!

1 Like

Maybe try working on something else for a while?

1 Like

I think I’m over critical as you said :joy: I’ll try to go easy on myself. Thanks for the advice tho :smile:

3 Likes

The community here is a great place to get help sometimes. I wouldn’t depend on the community for everything, but maybe asking for feedback about a specific paragraph or part in your story that you’re having the most trouble on will help. Then, if others are able to point some things out, you can keep those in mind when writing or looking back at the next chapter

1 Like

I think this is a writers biggest, most crippling, issue. More writers lack the confidence in what they write at some point or another. Write out a few chapters, put them away and come back to them to start edited. That way you have some time away, you aren’t frustrated over them, and can edit them with a fresh mindset. But, most importantly - just keep writing. :slight_smile:

2 Likes

I felt your pain before. English is also my second language. It’s quite hard to express what I had in my mind in the beginning. I have to just let all my critic instinct go and write very bad chapters to begin with. My first chapter of book one went through like 10 edits, yet I am still not happy with it. ( Too long and boring) But my other chapters seemed fine, so I continued. This is the way I finished all three books.

1 Like

Same here… I find it hard to express my self… Everything is always clear in my head… But pouring it out is real hard

2 Likes

It sounds like you just need to move onto the next chapter. Stop trying to edit them while it’s still a first draft. You can’t be 100% satisfied with it anyway, so write what you can and move on.


@dreams_i_have

6 Likes

Sorry I’m late after my initial reply. I knew this would be a big response going in, though, so…

I completely get what you mean. I do this a lot. A scene and its dialogue will come together in my mind while I’m out walking. It’s perfect. When I get home to jot it down, though, it changes. The dialogue isn’t exact. I can’t for the life of me remember it so precisely. The scenery and the play-by-play just doesn’t work quite as well.

For me, and this may be an issue with you, too, is that I see my stories in cinematic movie format. When I try to write it down and I’m disappointed by the result? Well, I go through what’s wrong. Is it how the information and dialogue exchanges are flowing? Is it my words? Or, is it the fact that it’s near impossible to translate from movie scene to novel scene, and vice versa?

I only say near impossible since some scenes are simple enough to be translated easily. Most scenes are not. Once I realize the issue is the medium, or my vision vs the meidum, I take it easier on myself. :sweat_smile:

Here are some other things you can try.

  • Blindfold yourself while writing. This will force your brain to think harder because it doesn’t get feedback from the results of you typing. It will also be impossible to edit. If there’s a typo, chances are you can’t fix it unless you remove the blindfold. This is great for brainstorming, and it also works for writing actual scenes. The only downside is that you need to know a keyboard very well :wink:
  • Change your environment. If you have a favorite place to write that you’re always using, try changing it up. The brain easily associates certain smells, feelings, and thoughts, with certain places. That means your favorite desk in the corner could be associated with the frustrations of trying to write, and not getting anywhere. A new environment = new mindset. This could be simple as going into a different room, working on the roof (uhm), the backyard, the porch, or different as going out to a local coffee shop where you can sit down. Maybe leave all distracting devices behind and don’t sign into Wi-fi. You’ll have no option but to write.
  • Change the music you listen to. Or if you don’t listen to any music, try starting now. You can listen to instrumentals, ambiance, lyrical, etc. I find lyrical distracts me a lot, but if it works for you, it works! There’s many sites that organize music according to the ‘mood’ too. If you’re writing a normal scene, you can go with something casual. If you’re writing action, you can go with something upbeat and cool.
  • When you have a scene in your head, visualizing yourself writing it, and visualize the feedback of typing it out. Make sure you have this scene in written format in your head before starting to write it. Otherwise, you’re forcing your brain to be creative simultaneously while translating imagery into words.
  • If English isn’t your native language, write in your native language first. Figure out how to convey what you want in English later when you translate it.

Other stuff

  • If there’s something about your writing where you firmly believe your style, or your current skill level just ‘isn’t enough’…do it anyway. I did this when I was younger. I told myself “I can’t start this story because I’m not skilled enough”. I decided, after a year, that I would do it anyway. Once I finish, I can go back and edit and polish it up. Then, as time passes and I learn more, I can make more changes.
  • Don’t be scared of ‘wasting your time’. Every effort you make toward analyzing your story, fixing it, polishing, destroying it, is work towards honing your skill the way you want it to be. Even if halfway through a story you decide you want to completely abandon the piece of work, it helped with something. There’s something good you can take away from it, so it wasn’t a waste.
  • Have faith in yourself. Write. Don’t tell yourself it sucks, or that you’re not doing it right. You’re trying, and that’s what’s important. No one’s life depends on you ‘getting it right’–it’s okay, relax.
1 Like

I have the same problem buddy.

1 Like

You’re AWESOME!! Thanks a lot for the wonderful advice, means a lot really :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: