Letting go of perfection – Krina Chauhan

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By Krina Chauhan

Perhaps, I should start off with a witty, insightful quote, but which one? And really, it should be something more modern, right? You know, you have to keep up with the times and all. But then again, everyone loves a classic. Actually, adding quotes a little too cliche, maybe I won’t. How about I open with that intense love scene between Jacob and Lilly? No, it’s too soon, and anyway, I don’t think I’ve developed Jacob’s character enough. Is it silver or sliver? There, Their or They’re? God, I hate those grammar trolls.♥

Urgh – why do I do this myself? I was off to a good start yesterday, but what’s happened to me today?

So, what did happen? Did someone put on those invisible constraints, telling you not to stray away from writing gurus like Stephen King? Did you start to hear taunting remarks on your inability to structure the ‘perfect’ sentence? Or maybe self-doubt reared its head, giving you the greatest high five for starting, but then took it right back, laughing in your face. And let’s not forget all those other voices of perfection that speak to us. So, that’s what happened, various voices of perfection happened, and it happened to me. It took me a year and a half of writing, a writer’s breakdown, and one hefty invoice (which I could have done without), in order to learn that I just had to be confident in my own voice, and let go of this unattainable fictitious ‘perfection’ in my writing.

Just… let… go.

Simple right? Well, not quite. For me, there was a long road ahead, redefining my ways of thinking, starting over, and adding another year to my work, but this road had to be walked, and it will have to be walked by many others too. We’ve all been there, striving for this impossible perfection, which leads to a book less pleased with, or simply, no book. And I have to say, the latter tends to happen far more often than we like to believe. Thousands upon thousands of books will never get written, never enter our minds, because we forget that we have this unique, powerful ability to write in our own voices, just to entertain, to let those in need escape, and instead, we revert back to acquiring this so-called perfection.

So, how did I get over my need to create something perfect and instead, something I was proud of? Well, I learnt from someone who’s achieved on their terms. I won’t name authors, but let’s just say her trilogies worth millions, and she’s certainly paved the way for new ways of writing and how books are published. And going back and re-reading her books for the second time, it opened my eyes and made me re-evaluate this impossible concept of perfection. Her books are nowhere near perfect, and in fact, some truly visible errors can be seen, but does she care? I’d like to ask her this one day, but most importantly what you should take from this is that it’s okay to go against the grain and write in ways that pleased you – no perfection in the equation.

So, I’ll leave you with this fellow writers, it’s okay not to be perfect, just love your words, work on enhancing your writing skills, and get the job done. It may not please some, but I’m sure you’ll find an audience it will. No one can tell you that your words aren’t ‘perfect’ enough.

Krina Chauhan lives in the South East and is the newest and freshest voice of South Asian Chick Lit. When she’s not letting her imagination run wild, she’s most likely to be wearing out her library card like your favourite loyalty card. Her novel, Just Promise Me This, is out now.


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