Skip to content

Get Out of Your Own Way

David Gane
David Gane
1 min read

The worst thing you can do as a writer is to start second-guessing your decisions. It leads to fear, worry, and eventually blocking up.

When writing, especially in a specific genre (read: tried and true), the desire to bust the cliché and move into new territory is always high. But what happens if you don’t have anything to fill the void.

Two options come to mind: embrace the cliche or make something up.

Either option is worthwhile. The cliche is familiar but it also lets you know where you stand as a writer. This doesn’t mean you are going to stand still at this point. With practice, you will move past it, and have the opportunity to do it right another time.

If you make it up, do it fast. Don’t question it. Write it, get it down, and move on.

You may end up with another cliche, so refer to the above.

The other possibility is you break the cliche by inverting it, subverting it, building on it or just tossing it away. This is the edge of where creativity happens.

Make a choice, get out of the way, and write.


David Gane Twitter

Co-writer of the Shepherd and Wolfe young adult mysteries, the internationally award-winning series, and teacher of storytelling and screenwriting.


Related Posts

Ways to edit

Just as there are different ways to write, there are different ways to edit. Some people will edit as they go, while others do it after they've finished a draft. Some will begin with the structure and move down into the sentences. Others do a sentence at a time, writing


A container can be almost anything. It can be made from any number of materials. Glass, plastic, and even paper or cardboard. It can be different heights, sizes, and shapes. It can hold almost anything—as long as it is sturdy enough to keep it inside. However, some containers will


In Will Storr's The Science of Storytelling, he states that the mission of the brain is control—whether it is a mental model to make sense of the world around us or to change it to gain control. Unfortunately, the model is often flawed. Too many inputs and not a