20 Dec 2020

What Is The Worst Writing Problem?



What is the worst writing problem? Writers often worry about what other people think. Unfortunately, this interferes with what we write, how we write and the speed at which we write. It’s probably one of the leading causes of writer’s block, and the sad thing is no matter how much we try to please everyone, there are many who will dislike what is written.

What is the biggest problem that we all have as writers?

No, it’s not promotion and marketing, although those are big issues for most writers. Promoting books is difficult and can seem like a wall that cannot be overcome. But that’s not the biggest problem.

It’s not writing the book, or publishing it, or even finding an agent in a traditional publisher. Those are all challenges to be sure but they are not the biggest problem.

I’m sure many other things went through your mind when you read that title. You might think it’s getting reviews, attracting the press, finding interviews, or any other number of things. Again, those are all issues, not to be minimized, but they are not the biggest problem.

Generally, our biggest problem is that we care what other people think.

Afraid of Other People’s Judgement

What’s wrong with worrying about what other people think? And how is that the biggest problem?

Because it stops us from writing we truly want to write, it slows us down, it causes us to change our message, and it corrupts our thoughts. In other words, worry about what other people think stops us from being a writer.

  • What if our readers don’t like what we had to say?
  • What if nobody bought our book?
  • What if we get bad reviews?
  • What if the beta readers returned to many issues?

These lead to additional questions as we write:

  • Should I include that? Or is it too controversial?
  • Would that be a trigger for my readers? Don’t want to trigger them after all!
  • Is writing about that taboo?
  • What if the publisher doesn’t like what I have to say?
  • What if I get bad Amazon reviews because of what I’ve said?

Once we write it we ask even more questions:

  • The beta readers thought that was a bad idea, should I remove it?
  • I’ve been getting bad reviews on a book I published, so maybe the next book should be a little more tame. Is that the right thing to do?
  • The editor said that scene was in bad taste. Should I remove it?
  • And so on. You get the idea.

What Do Writers Worry About?

We worry about bad reviews, horrible emails and letters from people, and flames by trolls on Goodreads.

We get devastated when we receive even mild criticism from family and friends.

None of that is any different than with any other artist. All creative people suffer from the same affiliation – they worry about what others think.

The problem is this affects the work.

  • We stop writing.
  • Our writing slows down.
  • We change our writing.
  • We change our style.
  • We get emotionally upset.
  • We smile and take the criticism.
  • We give up writing completely.

The Problem This Causes And The Solution

What is the worst writing problemObviously, anything you write should be molded to communicate to your audience or client.

But don’t let what other people think corrupt the passion that you put into your creations.

Remember, most people have good intentions. They may not understand why you write, they may not like what you’ve written, they may even heartedly disagree with your conclusions. But for the most part, people wish you well and want you to succeed as a writer.

On the other hand, every once in a while, you’ll run across someone who is malicious and does wish you harm. When you run into these Individuals, just shrug and move on. The input from this type of person has no value and their only intent is to tear you down and stop you from writing.

My advice is to understand your audience (your readers or your client) and mold your story to communicate to them.

Don’t worry about what anybody else has to say about what you’ve written. It doesn’t matter. Those people who write bad reviews aren’t going to buy your books. The trolls on Goodreads aren’t going to help you spread the word about what you’ve written. Those people who leave general comments such as “I didn’t get it”, “it seems pointless”, “it didn’t appeal to me” or even just a simple “it was okay” can be safely ignored.

Write for your readers (or your client) and write for yourself to fulfill your passion for creation.

As far as changing our writing to please others, this little skit from Bob Newhart sums everything up nicely. Stop worrying about what other people think. Just produce the best writing that you can.

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Danielle Apple

I think you nailed it. The only opinion we should truly worry about is that of our target audience. Sometimes we are our own audience!

I have a lot of anxiety about showing my family anything less than perfection, but I have to come to terms with the fact that pefection to one is disaster to another. Betas on the other hand, I crave their criticism. It helps me improve and research more things that propel craft and content.

Kathleen L.

Outstanding content. You really put so much emotion to this. I felt writers how they feel about, they get inspiration from people and places but in the end they also worry how other people will accept what they write about. I must say this content is one of the best advise I read about overcoming judgement and critics. Thanks Richard.


Excellent article. You must read it if you are facing problem, How to promote and market your content.


Amazing…It is a excellent article for all writers,who want to promote and market their content. Thank you The Writing King.

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