The very, very, very, very ,very, very, very first lesson I ever learned in Kempo was this:
Anything. A large fellow is coming at you with a haymaker, screaming at the top of his lungs, convinced that you took the last copy of Call of Duty . . . and you do what?
Quick! Defense Maneuver #2.
Wait, that doesn't work on a big guy. Well, not for me really. And it's better with more room. And not great with that strike. Hard to do in a crowded game store.
By now he's hit you and you're on the floor, Call of Duty being pried out of your grasping fingertips.
And why? Because you failed to react. The worst thing to do is nothing. Something, even something horribly wrong, is better than just standing there waiting.
I've been on belt tests where they told us to do a specific technique. All reason bleeds out of my mind and dribbles onto the floor where it puddles nicely and waves up at me. Leaving me with nothing. But I do something. Dodge, hit, kick . . . do not stand there. Sure, sometimes the instructors come by and give an overly friendly punch because you did the wrong thing. But trust me, the punch they'll give you for doing nothing is much, much worse.
This relates to writing. Writing something, even if it's worse than terrible, is better than staring at the screen and typing nothing. Or just watching TV instead of even booting up the computer.
Write something. Every single day. Don't be afraid to suck. Find more writing tools to put into your tool box and figure out how to use them. Sure, your writing group might tell you how horrible your latest submission is. Good. Use what they tell you and fix it. Move forward. Don't stop.
The first million words or so are supposed to be warm-up anyway. Gotta get them out at some point, right?
Next time I'll relate the always dependable kick to the groin to writing.