IWSG: Goldilocks and The Two Bears

As a new year starts I send you, my dear readers, sincere wishes for joyful creative abundance and peaceful reflective tranquility. 

This month’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group topic is “What are your favorite and least favorite questions people ask you about your writing?” I’ll enjoy reading other members’ sites for the responses — though I can guess a few likely suspects right off the bat — but I choose another path.

Recall the tale of Goldilocks and The Three Bears? Blonde chick. Forest. Lost. Cabin. B&E. Options. Inevitable confrontation with owners could’ve gone bad. All good in the end.

Yeah. The options.

Too big/hot, too small/cold, and the ever-appealing “just right.”

Not of interest here. But the structure seems relevant to something I’ve been curious about lately.

Which are you?

I’m not the first one to note some authors are “over-writers” and some are “under-writers.” (The missing third bear is for that illusive and perhaps fantastic — in more ways than one — group that write “just right.”)

Stephen King is a perfect contemporary example of an “over-writer.” He writes daily and voluminously. Anyone who read his On Writing  knows this. The man gushes forth words like the rush of water over a dam. An Amazonian forest of words. Then he [usually] pares his draft down into something more manageable, sculpting away those things that don’t add to the story or that flutter brightly in patches of sun but aren’t cohesive with the theme.

I appear to be an example of an “under-writer.” (I think that Joanna Penn may be another, if memory serves.) A million things run through my head while I’m writing a story but not all of them make it to the manuscript. I need to go back and fill in those gaps so that the telepathy* I’m attempting with my readers doesn’t leave them short of a lot of key information that didn’t make it through my fingers and onto the page.

(*Just read On Writing.)

Please let me know — which are you? And what challenges ensue?

And always, keep writing.


Insecure Writer's Support Group #IWSGThe purpose of the Insecure Writer’s Support Group 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! #IWSG



Photo by Marco Secchi on on Unsplash

One thought on “IWSG: Goldilocks and The Two Bears”

  1. Sorry about rolling in late here. I used to be a much bigger overwriter than I am now. I dwell some place in between. I over write scenes with information that isn’t necessary, and I underwrite the creative details that really make the voice pop. So I end up doing both adding and subtracting when I edit.

    Hope your January is going well!

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