The Purpose of IWSG is to share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds!

To join IWSG visit Ninja Captain Alex J. Cavanaugh here.



As fiction writers, we focus on thinking creatively. By this I mean we depend on our emotions and instincts to produce stories that are both unique and compelling. Most writers are comfortable with creative thinking. In fact, it’s why many of us started writing in the first place.

That said, in our endeavor to create, we often neglect the key role critical thinking plays in process. Critical thinking—systematic analysis based on facts rather than emotion or intuition—is essential to editing, revision, even marketing.

Whether you revise as you go or wait until you have a completed draft in front of you, editing is at the heart of writerly self-doubt. We don’t have time for insecurities as we create. The story is flowing, and we’re riding the wave of words that will carry us to THE END.

But evaluating our work dispassionately? Self-promotion? Marketing? These are daunting prospects. We risk discovering our brilliant oeuvre is nothing more than cliches and recycled ideas; or worse—boring, lifeless, and flatter than the paper the work is printed on.

Given that critical thinking is what stands between mediocre work and a stellar piece of writing, between getting the work out into the world or having it die on the shelf, who wouldn’t be insecure?

I’m calling out critical thinking as my insecurity for August. On the other hand, I’ve been editing my current manuscript for almost as long as it took to draft. It might be more accurate to label August’s insecurity as ongoing.


QUESTION OF THE MONTH: What was your very first piece of writing as an aspiring writer? Where is it now? Collecting dust or has it been published?

The first piece of writing I finished and submitted was a short story called, “The Penny.” I submitted it to Mysterical-e in the Fall of 2009, and it was published a year later.