Expectations vs. What Is by Beth Barany

Expectations vs. What Is by Beth Barany

Do you have unrealistic expectations with your writing?

In my conversations with writers this week, one theme kept coming up.

“I thought writing the first draft would be easier by now.”

“I have unrealistic expectations all the time. That makes it so hard to write anything much.”

“Why does editing my novel take so long?”

My first response to each of these writers was, “I know how you feel.”

Because I do. I’ve experienced it all and seen many writers go through the same experiences.

Every first draft is challenging because each one is new.

Every time you sit down to write be open to the now and open to what is ready to emerge. Write that.

And editing a novel takes as long as it takes, and there’s only one way to speed up the process — and that’s spend more time and address each issue with a singular focus.

Our Expectations

Our expectations of how the writing process should be ruins our ability to engage with what’s right in front of us.

To be more productive, more creative, and more emotionally connected to your writing, practice being with what is — your emotional, mental, and physical state — with an open heart and a clear gaze.

Some call it beginner’s mind or zen mind. Some call it the openness of a child. Whatever you call it, adopt a stance of being curious about what is ready to be birthed from the chrysalis of your imagination.

And trust.

Trust what arises, what flows onto the page.

Our creativity and our stories come from the Great Mystery and we are blessed to be able to bring them into form.

“…be grateful for our good moods and graceful for the low ones…”

(From https://fraukesworld.com/become-aware-of-your-moods/, adapted from Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff by Richard Carlson)

Upcoming Workshop

Wednesday, Sept. 11, 7-9pm: I’m excited to present to the Napa Valley Writers, a branch of the California Writers Club: “Essential Keys to Story Planning.”

In this talk, I’ll help you brainstorm the steps to create your novel—from character development to plot structure to story themes and world building—so you can start writing your novel with clarity and confidence.

Hope you can join us!

Registration details here: http://napavalleywriters.net/.

More upcoming events and workshops are listed here.

Registration Open for Plan and Write Your Novel: 60-Day Challenge

After 5 years of teaching 2 courses in the fall, this October Ezra and I are doing something a little differently. We’re combining our planning course with our writing support group for one course: Plan and Write Your Novel: 60-Day Challenge.

Are you ready?

This course comes with weekly support and teaching calls, over 30 lessons with lifetime access, a private community of your peers, and 2 experienced teachers working alongside you.

Write the novel you’ve aways dreamed of writing.

We have some fun bonuses this year:

  • e-book edition, Plan Your Novel Like A Pro and its workbook
  • Story Structure course
  • Create Compelling Characters course
  • “How to Generate Your Story Idea” upcoming webinar
  • “How to Develop a Writing Practice” upcoming webinar

Sign up by Sept 13th to attend the two live webinars. Class size is limited. All the details and how to register here:


Registration closes Sept. 27.

Guest Spotlight: Writing teacher and author, Pam Sourelis

I met fellow writing teaching and fiction writer Pam Sourelis through a heart-centered business development group we were both members of and we bonded over our similar intuitive, heart-entered and comprehensive approach to writing and teaching writing.

I love that she has a memoir class on offer and thought I’d share it with you. Go here https://wingedhorsewritingstudio.com/we-are-our-stories-an-introduction-to-memoir-writing/ for all the details and how to register for this 6-week course that begins Oct. 6, 2019.

Because it’s good to know: Class size is limited and early bird registration closes Sept. 22.

You can also read more from Pam on my Writer’s Fun Zone blog here: https://writersfunzone.com/blog/2019/08/22/inner-critic-inner-judge-by-pam-sourelis/.

Have a happy and creative week! Happy writing!


On the Writer’s Fun Zone blog last week:

If you’d like to be a guest writer for Writer’s Fun Zone, check out our writer’s guidelines here:


I look forward to your query.

NEWEST BOOK: Plan Your Novel Like A Pro

Plan Your Novel Like A Pro: And Have Fun Doing It! by Beth and Ezra BaranyThis book will help you get excited to plan your novel. The tools shared here are designed to spark your muse and give you confidence when you sit down to write your story. Plan Your Novel Like A Pro: And Have Fun Doing It! is for organic writers and pansters who want a roadmap to follow, so that they can let their creativity loose.

In print and digital. Buy Links | Read an excerpt here.

** Is this you? => Are you a podcaster or blogger and would like to feature PLAN YOUR NOVEL LIKE A PRO on your channel? Review copies available. Please hit reply and let me know. Thanks!

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