The Golden Ticket – More on Writing Advice

People are perceived as more credible when they make eye contact and speak with confidence, no matter what they have to say.

Robert Levine, The Power of Persuasion

The wonderful thing about being a newbie is also its biggest stumbling block:

All of the people telling you what to do.

If you want advice, there are a lot of people out there looking to be flattered by your asking. Or even your not-asking. They’ll gleefully fill your ear with their hard-earned wisdom. They’ll tell you what worked for them. They’ll learn you real good that if you want to make progress, you’ll skip all of the mistakes they made and that they’ve seen other people make.

Imagine a mountain of Wonka Bars piled before you, ten stories tall. These experts will reach in and hand you the one they promise has the Golden Ticket.

And before you take me for being above it all, you and I are also they. It’s in our nature to think we’ve found the key to everything and to let the world know about it.

Really, this is jim-dandy! We’re all looking to skip the hard stuff, right? The laborious tedium without reward. All of those blisters on our fingers from pulling apart so many wrappers.

But what if I told you that sometimes the blisters are necessary?

Am I saying that with enough confidence for you to believe me?

With so many people doling out tips, you’re going to inevitably run into conflict.

What do you do then?

I’ll tell you what I try to do and leave it at that:

I pick one way and give it a go.

As an overthinker, I know this is easier said than done.

But done is what’s needed.

You’re probably already doubting this thing you choose will work for you. You hope it might, but you’re not wrong to doubt. Chances are it won’t. There seems to be an immutable law that says there are a lot of wrong ways to do things and only a few that work.

My belief, I’m somewhat sorry to say, is that you can’t find your Golden Ticket without unwrapping a lot of Wonka Bars. In fact, I might stretch this analogy to its breaking point and state that every bar you unwrap has a piece of the Golden Ticket within. You need to keep unwrapping until you can finally tape it together.

We’ve come full circle. I’ve gleefully filled your ear with my hard-earned wisdom. I leave the decision of what to do with it in your capable hands.


[Image courtesy of Derek Lakin on Flickr]

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