Trash Talkin’

You think this is hard? Well no one else gives a crap about this book so if you want it finished, you have to do it.

My name is Melanie, and I trash talk myself.

But in my defense, it works. I was hesitant to tell you all that I’d started back with my edits. The couple times I’ve tried since moving back I never really got anywhere with them, and I was worried that I’d have a couple good days, then let it sink to the bottom of my to-do list. I’m not sure why, but my motivation has returned and I’m determined to actually finish this thing.

(Part of it may be because I’m still really excited to write my paranormal YA idea, and I don’t want to start that until I’m querying After the Fall. I’m thinking about the YA constantly, so that may be the source of my motivation.)

I’ve set myself a deadline of September 1st, and so far I’m on track. If I edit five pages a day, I’ll come in a little early, so that means I’ve allowed myself a couple days of slacking. As of Sunday at 10am (when I’m writing this) I’m on page 111 of 342, which means — let me check my calculator — hmm… seems I need to do seven or eight pages a day. Okay, this is why we check our facts, right? I have written more since I first did the calculations, so maybe that’s where the faulty math comes in.

Anyway, September 1st.

It’s not like you have anything else to do! Just get the pages done and quit yer whining!


Do you have any motivational speeches that you scream at yourself — internally, of course — to keep yourself going?

About Melanie Hooyenga

Writer. Designer. Jock. Reader. Wife. Puppy-Mama. SCBWI member since 2015.


  1. This sounds like I could have written it. I’m working on rewrites on a novel and won’t let myself start on the YA I’m excited about. I beat myself up–internally, physically would hurt–by telling myself it’s ridiculous that I’ve written over 300 pages of my novel and never finished it.

    • Lisa, I thought you’d already started your YA. I know it’s sick, but it makes me feel better that you’re in the same position.

      Someone once asked me if I wanted several partial novels or a complete one, and so I remind myself of that when I’m getting tired of the current wip.

  2. Jon

    Yay! You’re writing again! Good luck.

    Last week, I swore to myself that I’d write every day until I finished my draft. So far, believe it or not, I’ve actually stuck to it. Now, just 30,000 more words to go.

  3. YAY! You’re halfway there! Wait. Nevermind, I never could count.

    I save my trash talkin’ for my diet. Writing gets done whether I want it to or not. 😉 I’m already thinking of NaNo!

  4. You GO girl!

    *Snaps fingers*

    I don’t respond well to most motivation techniques (my brains is teh stubbornz), but I do occasionally tell myself, “Writers write.” That one helps sometimes. 🙂


  5. Oh yes. Well, I used to. I used to rather enjoy berating myself through the whole day, really and truly enjoy it. Then one day I didn’t. Don’t know what happened.

    Now, I just stay focused on today and now. Mostly it’s just, “Just take one more step. The rest will fall into place.”

    • I certainly don’t enjoy it, but I’ve found it’s sometimes necessary to keep myself going. That’s also where the allowing myself to stop when I’m done rule falls into place.

      I’m glad you’ve found your focus. 🙂

  6. JLC

    Nope. Unfortunately my voices tell me that the WIP isn’t going anywhere and to have fun while the sun lasts. I have one more month, then back to writing season.

  7. Lisa Dovichi

    A Hoo after my own heart. I heart trash talking. I’ll trash talk myself, friends, family, strangers. I was voted “Most Likely To Get Beat Up Over Her Big Mouth” in high school. 😀

  8. kevin

    actually… i do… “This is actually, pretty amatuer…” and I simply say it to myself in my best LB impersonation… that usually get’s me to double (sometimes triple) my efforts!


  9. Good for you, Melanie!

    I have a moralistic internal voice that criticizes me all day. It says things like, “You could have said that more tactfully, you know,” or “That wasn’t very nice”. It’s awful. I think it’s my mom.

  10. Nadine

    I’m excited you are editing! Yay for September 1st! You can do it!!

    For my motivational speeches, I start thinking about all the things I want to do and places I want go. And I’ll never get there if I just sit here and don’t do anything. The speech usually works.

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