Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Shitty First Drafts and Perfect Long Weekends

Everyone has different hurdles when it comes to their work. While I was struggling to write a rough draft, I decided to reread a chapter from Ann Lamott's Bird by Bird called Shitty First Drafts. In that, Ann eloquently tells us that everyone, at some point, writes shitty first drafts and that it is okay; in fact, it is essential. I used to freak out about the way I wrote in my diary entries: What if someone finds these and this all they will ever have to critique my expression?? This is certainly true for writing, but I also think it applies to our other pursuits, whether that is an exercise regime or test grade. Everything is allowed to have its trial period, when things are not completely together.

It made me wonder: how often do we stand in our own way?

Do you ever struggle with putting wor
ds down on paper? How do you overcome any of your writing difficulties?

The weekend was so incredibly relaxing; it truly captured everything I love about summer in the city: outdoor meals, spontaneous movies, late (and lazy) brunches, pedictures, smoothies, strolling through the park at night....

(Also, I may have watched a marathon of Keeping Up With the Kardashians and Real Housewives of New York City...I still cannot decide if that means I mastered the art of mindless relaxation or simply hit rock bottom.)

Saturday evening snapshot: sangrias + hammock + rooftop = bliss

Yesterday, I went to a wine bar and then tried a 'Shroom Burger in Madison Square Park. Best veggie burger ever!!! I ended my weekend tonight, with some awesome girls who are all doing such incredible things with their lives! I love being around people who do so much; it instigates me to keep striving, keep redefining...

I also saw---and cried in---Toy Story 3. I have yet to see a Pixar movie that I do not love (yes, I am a five year old trapped in the body of a twenty three year old). Each one does such an incredible job of creating loveable, unique characters!

Do you have a favorite Disney and/or Pixar movie?

Fun question I asked some Toy Story fans: Do you relate to Woody or Buzz more?
I think I am more of a Woody girl; he comes off as the classic nice guy whereas Buzz strikes me as more of a Type A man. In any case, all of the Toy Story characters are so adorable!!

My favorites: Woody, Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head, and Rex

Woody: "That's not flying. It's falling with style."

Buzz: "You are a sad, strange, little man. And you have my pity."

Rex: "I...I don't like confrontation."

Cute green aliens: "You have saved our lives. We are eternally grateful."


  1. Yay for relaxing weekends! What is sleeping late? I'm usually up by 6 even on the weekends (sometimes I roll back over, but not often)

    No favorite Disney movie, they're all engaging in their own way. I do prefer Woody over Buzz which is actually kinda weird because I'd normally pick the guy in uniform over the cowboy. (Although, I gotta say, cowboys know how to wear those Wranglers! No saggy baggy jeans for them!)

  2. Sometimes the right words don't come to me, so I put it down in caveman speak to rewrite later. My rewriting phase is when I have all the elements come together.

    I just finished Bird by Bird about two weeks ago. While I thought it didn't live up to the hype of inspiration, I did like it.

    I'm a big fan of Pixar. Love the first Shrek.

    Sounds like a nice weekend.

  3. I'm always in my own way, so my plan is to work on that this summer. Bird by Bird is one of my favorites!

    Glad you had a great weekend. Good luck to you!

  4. Oh HAIL YES! I mentally slap myself in the face and pull myself together. My inspirational muse always comes back after I spent two days of crappy writting. Guess she has to, "Please, don´t go on, I´ll help you!" lol

    And Kardashians marathon? Crap girl, what happened to you? Buuut I admit, I watch the KArdashians during lunch. And yes, I have a blast with their fake reactions and relationships. Nobody in that family loves the other, ye be sure of that!

    Fav. Disney movie...so many...but Lion King and Beauty and the Beast nail it I guess.
    I relate to Woody more because I LOVE TOM HANKS! =)

  5. I don't have any problems with getting down the first draft for the most part - I love the joy and freedom of 1st draft. I'm just very, very grateful there is such a thing as revision! :)

    Love the photo from the rooftop - looks fantastic.

  6. I soooo want to go see Toy Story 3. I'm a Woody girl. However, I think my all-time favorite Disney movie is still "The Fox and the Hound" -- yeah, I went old school. There is something about the friendship between Tod and Copper that gets me EVERY time!!

    I find that I don't have a problem writing shitty first drafts. I sometimes have difficulty recognizing a still somewhat shitty second or third draft... that's my problem!

  7. I'm a pro at shitty first drafts. Oh, the shit I can write, I tell you! It's the second drafts that make me pull my hair out.

    And your weekend sounds fab!

  8. I didn't know first drafts could be anything but shitty, and if I'm lucky my second one is just considered crap ;) When I can't seem to find the words to put down, I don't. I let myself take the break until the words are ready to come back.
    I worked at Disney as an intern so I love every movie, I'm positive I was brainwashed there. I'm dying to see Toy Story 3!
    And I'm a new follower :) Have a good one

  9. oh yeah, first drafts. I just write a bunch of jibberish and come back later and revise the heck out of it. As long as you get something down!

  10. Ah, all of these wonderful comments are motivating me to get started on my writing today (yes, it is 3:00 and I have not done a thing).

  11. My favorite Disney movie is Sleeping Beauty. I love the scene in the forest where they first meet!

    First drafts are hard because I want to get stuff down, but I want it to be good, and sometimes I just procrastinate and get nothing done!

  12. I'm starting a new WiP right now, and am paralyzed because I want my first draft to perfect. It's impossible. So I'm forcing myself to write on, even when my fingers itch to edit. :)

    Hmm, I'm not sure. I think it's a toss up between Mulan and Beauty and the Beast.

  13. Good for you! Sometimes the time you take off is as important as the time you spend working.

    We never seem to get ourselves out to movies anymore. I wish we did. Now we aim to catch them on Pay Per View. I'll be sure to catch Toy Story 3! I'm a serious Disney fan. I don't know which movie would be my favorite.

  14. Re: Shitty First Drafts

    I totally agree! I am on my third first draft and noticed how this one is easier than the first two.

  15. My first drafts are awful. I love second and third and fourth drafts because I have something to work with. As for favorite Disney movies, I have to go with Mulan. She's so awesome!!

    Thanks for visiting my blog the other day!

  16. I love Mulan, too! She is awesome!!!