DONE IS BETTER THAN GOOD.
Dear Ones –
Those of you who regularly follow this page know that I say this all the time. The best lesson my pragmatic mother ever taught me, and the opposite of perfectionism: Done is better than good.
What she meant was: Just get it done. It doesn't have to be immaculate; it just has to get done.
I like the way George Patton said it, too.
I cannot even tell you how many plans I have "violently executed" by the seat of my pants, rather than waiting for things to be perfect. In fact, I have written every single one of my books that way — in stolen moments, as efficiently as I can, and constantly letting things slide that are not ideal.
Ben Franklin said that laws and sausages are two things you never want to watch being made. I would add to that: Books.
If we wanted to have a really boring afternoon together, I could sit down with you and point out every single mistake, shortcoming, shortcut, and problem in each one of my books. I could show you underdeveloped characters, points where I skipped over 20 years in the narrative because I couldn't figure out how else to do it, areas where I didn't do the research I probably should have done, or where I rushed an emotional epiphany. I could show you characters that I killed off simply because I didn't know what else to do with them. But you know what? Those books are DONE. All six of them: Done. And they are FINE. And for that, I am proud.
Because at some point, you really have to put the kid on the schoolbus and send him out into the world, ready or not.
And I think this goes for everything.
Make a plan, dear ones. Execute it. Violently, if you must.
But get it done, ok? The thing you came here to do. Get it done.