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Do you wish you could write? Or you'd like to get back into writing? You've landed in the right place! I'm Kim Duke, your writing coach based in Canada. I help women start writing for the sheer joy of it!

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Writing is like gardening. Be willing to pull what isn’t working.

Filed in: Get Inspired

Gardeners are always a little odd.

During the short gardening season where I live in Canada, you’ll often find me outside. I enjoy gardening, although I’m not an expert by any stretch of the imagination. Why do I love it? Writing is like gardening. You have to be willing to pull what isn’t working. And you only get better by getting your hands dirty. Even then it is a bit of a crap shoot.

Like this morning, for instance. I discovered that someone murdered my baby cauliflower. Or I should say, they ate it for breakfast. (Some brazen little worms.) It was my first cauliflower and I liked watching it develop from a pearl to a golf ball but then the pirate cutworms made their invasion. My perfect baby cauliflower now displayed strange brown spots and its leaves were sad. There was only one thing to do. I pulled the wormy plant from the soil and planted some lettuce seeds there instead. Take that, you snarky little buggers.

Listen. Your writing is like this. What you initially think is a wonderful word, sentence, or paragraph – at first, seems to glow with promise. Look at those lush green sentences! But we can’t fall in love with our writing. Instead, let a writing piece sit for a day or two and when you come back to it, you’ll see something has changed. And the odds are that a paragraph, or even an entire page, has to be pulled and put into the compost pile.

Don’t hesitate. Pull the sucker.

I know what you’re thinking.

“But Kim, I HAVE to include X,Y,Z!”

Maybe you do. Maybe you don’t. But if a portion of your writing is full of worms, or dying of rot, or just planted in a spot that doesn’t fit? You need to pull it. Sometimes you can replant it somewhere else. Most of the time – you throw it onto the compost pile.

And then you get your hands dirty and write something better.

*Did you love this? Then check out Scribbly – my quirky writing program that we snail-mail right to your house. Scribbly writers from three countries joyfully anticipate looking in their mailbox!

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