Episode 200: It Shoulda Been Me

On September 24, 2022, Kasie and Rex delivered their 200th episode on Writer Envy. Here are the show notes:

Theme for the day

Writer Envy Sucks


  • The podcast review
  • SCWA’s Virtual Conference still accepting registrations
  • What is writer envy? What’s there to be jealous about?
  • Is this limited to creatives? Why or why not?
Photo by cottonbro on Pexels.com

Segment 1

So I was scrolling through recommended podcasts and found #AmWriting. If you’re unfamiliar with the #amwriting, it began with a woman in Colorado on Twitter who wrote every morning and frequently did morning writing sprints. So the “am” doubles as a verb “I Am” and the time of day – “a.m.”

This podcast is three well-established writers, authors, editors and runs the gambit from habit to craft. It’s annoying in its “morning chat” piece where there’s some inside jokes and “catch up” stuff. Which, I realize, we do as well. Oops. It took 5:20 to get to the meat of the episode.

Another podcast, “The Shit No One Tells You About Writing” is similar. The first 30 minutes are two agents plus the host of the show (who is also an agent) breaking down a single writer’s query and providing feedback. It’s great if you’re querying but OMG they say the same stuff a lot. So I’ve started sliding past the first 30 minutes to the guest author bit where they explore specific themes or lessons in their own work. Recent episode included a writer talking about when to use the “tell” voice – including when and how to stack adjectives.

Anyway, in the #AmWriting podcast, they began the topic with an example of an author with someone (Colleen Hoover) having multiple titles on bestsellers lists. That – from a business perspective – is a volume-based approach to writing. Hoover is a YA author in YA romance, specifically, who had made a good run with her self-pubb’d novels and made a transition to traditional publishing. One was shared by a Kardashian on social media and that kind of broke things open for her. Since then, people have really discovered her talent and her skill.

#AmWriting admits there is both skill and luck involved in getting to that insane-level of success. 

So, questions:

  1. How can we just put our butts in the chair and write as much (volume!) as Colleen Hoover?
  2. How can we develop our craft to the level of someone who earns high praise for their work?
  3. How can we put ourselves in the right place to get lucky?

Segment 2

What are the sources of our envy? It may very well be…

  • Things suck where we are.
  • Envy is motivating.
  • My own work is missed timing. – Why that book?

Segment 3

  • I know I need to pay attention to what readers want but…
  • We’re comparing everyone’s final draft to our first draft.
  • Sometimes I sit down to write and think it should be effortless – easier – and get frustrated when it’s not.
  • When we read a lot of others’ work, we keep an internal scorecard of ALL of THEM.
  • Sometimes we paralyze ourselves with “shoulds.”

Segment 4

How do we flip the envy into energy?

  • Think of it like a job and have the discipline to show up for work.
  • Be awed, but recognize you could have done that, too.
  • Recognize exactly what the valuable pieces of someone’s else work is, and then work on getting better at those specific things.

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