Underwater The Fish Don’t Stink

Remember Bobby’s World? Awesome show.

I ran across this clip after having a throwback moment. It got me to thinkin’, “What else don’t stink under water?”

Your own work.

Whether you’re a writer, artist, teacher, or driver–it doesn’t matter what you are–when you’re underwater, nothing you do stinks. I’m speaking a bit metaphorically. What I’m trying to say is, when no one sees your work, it’s the best thing in the world. But once you show it to others, you can finally see just how badly your project appears.

Just the other day, I noticed a writer being criticized for her poor editing. I don’t mean the grammatical kind. I’m talking about huge mistakes where you mention a person’s name that’s been dead since the last book. She confused her own characters.

It happens to me all the time, but my editor normally helps me out or I catch it after a few proofreads.

Most recently, I couldn’t smell how badly my manuscript stunk. I wrote the novel in a few weeks to rush it off to an editor. When I received it back, I noticed how poor my draftsmanship was. Though my writing generally sucks until I do a few edits, this one was really bad.

But I learned a lot by bringing my work out into the sun prematurely. Though I’m ashamed at how poorly it was written, I can now make much stronger first drafts because of my mistake.

The moral of the story: Get your stinky fish to land and be ready for criticisms. You have to learn from your errors. No matter who you are or what you do, you can always be better at your trade.

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