Writing is frustration—it's daily frustration, not to mention humiliation. It's just like baseball: you fail two-thirds of the time. —Philip Roth

It’ll Be Easy!

Whenever I start a new writing assignment, I’m always over-optimistic about how long it will take to complete. This will practically write itself, I think. It’s simple! I have all of the ideas already!


It never quite works out that way, though. Inevitably, the piece takes longer than I thought, and the ideas that seemed straightforward become elusive and—sometimes—vanish completely. There are some blissful projects that really do seem almost effortless. But that isn’t the usual scenario.

It’s Supposed To Be Hard

Obviously, this can be frustrating and even embarrassing when I’m late for a deadline or produce something that isn’t all I hoped it could be. That’s when I have to remind myself that this is not an anomaly...this is the process. It is supposed to be hard. It’s supposed to work your mind. That’s what makes it worth doing.

Beyond The Shot

Every step is movement along the journey.

Wayne Gretzky said that you miss one hundred percent of the shots you don’t take. But I’d argue that when you don’t take a shot, you miss even more than the shot itself. You miss the experience of the attempt. When you have a frustrating day, try to remind yourself that even frustrating days build skills. Every step is movement along the journey.