How to Write When You HATE Your Story | Guest Post

Right now, do you hate your story?

Like, despise it?

*looks around the room and the lack of raised hands* 

Yeah, I get it. Not a lot of us want to admit that every now and then…we hate our stories so bad it takes tremendous willpower not to smash the delete button, or to hurl it into a dumpster. 

Or to keep writing.

This is definitely a big problem, and those who don’t struggle with this (bless your lucky souls) are probably shocked to discover that the same writers who gush over their beloved characters are sometimes plagued with a concerning distaste for that selfsame story.


Chances are you are zeroing in on the trees instead of gazing at the forest as a whole. You’re working yourself into a rage over those pesky little phrases. Your eye is becoming sharper to all the glaring faults. Until that’s all you see.

Breathe and step back. Take a break, as short or long as you need it to be.


You’ve been thinking and dreaming and obsessing about your story for a long time; maybe you need to think about something else for a little bit. You can write a fun fanfic, a short story, flash fiction, or pick up an old hobby you used to love but didn’t think you had time for anymore. 

You be the one to decide how short or long that break will be. A day? An afternoon? A month? A year? 

It depends. The point is to fill that creative well so you’ll be able to use it again. 

(Although a year might be a bit… *coughs*  excessive. Just saying.)


This is thinking time, dear creatives.

Why do you hate your story? Are you not connecting with the characters? Running into too many plot holes? Is the writing itself just falling flat? Is the plot becoming boring? 

Then keep asking yourself why, why why. If you’re ever watched The Man Who Invented Christmas* , think of that scene where Charles runs into a mental block, and his friend asks him questions about Scrooge. What’s he afraid of? Why? How?

Do that with your story. Be relentless with the questions. Pace the room, if need be, and talk aloud to yourself, after praying for guidance.

Why are you not connecting with the characters? Why is the writing falling flat? Why is the plot becoming boring?

The more you relentlessly batter the problem with these questions, the more likely it is that it will finally unlock and things will start to make sense to you.

*Y’all. This movie is so incredible. Every writer in particular who loves Christmas needs to watch it. And even if it’s not Christmas, just watch it! It’s that good! 


There is a high likelihood that you’re the only one who hates your writing. 

Don’t be afraid to take a chance, a risk, and share your story with someone. 

You need to be told that, at the very least, it has potential. It may be poorly written. But that doesn’t mean it can’t be great. 

As an example, Sisters Three held a short story contest last year that I really wanted to enter. But I just wasn’t being struck with ideas, not until literally days before the deadline. (Three days, if I remember correctly.) I rushed to write the story, and when the deadline arrived, I had major misgivings. Now, I prefer to spend months editing and rewriting the story until it’s as perfect as I can get it. So it was greatly out of my comfort zone to actually enter it into the contest. But my story ended up being accepted into Heard in Silence, the anthology they’ve planned to publish!

If I had listened to my fears and doubts, I never would have submitted the short story. I would have kept it to myself until I felt confident.

But those thoughts were wrong—and I forced myself to treat them as the lies they were. You can’t wait until you feel confident. (Well, you can. But if you make that a habit, you won’t go far in life.) 

So remember, when you think your story is a giant mess worthy to be torn into strips and thrown into the trashcan…you’re probably wrong. Someone will love it.

And speaking of loving it…


List everything you love about your story. Journal about it. Read your favorite scenes, even if the writing may or may not be trash. Grasp until you find the heart of your story, then hold it tight. Don’t let it go. You need to remember it. What it feels like to be excited to write again. 

Some ways you might be able to fall in love with your story again are…

  • Go crazy on Pinterest and make aesthetic mood boards
  • Make playlists with any and every song that reminds you of your story
  • Find a scent that captures the mood of your book
  • Write letters to your characters to learn more about them (yes, you have permission to treat them like real people)
  • Daydream about ways to make it the most interesting and exciting it can possibly be (no rules: just dream)

Get in touch with yourself and what drives you the most to write. Maybe it’s weather, or scents, or character stuff, or the right song, or writing by hand, or at noon or midnight. You know what it is. Think back to your best writing days. What was going on there? What was the environment like? Your mindset? Your energy level?

Use that to your advantage.

Yes, feelings are flighty, unreliable things, but if you’re writing/editing/publishing this book of yours, you may as well decide to like it, while you’re at it. Not only will it make the process more fun, it will make it more meaningful.


Yes, I stole that phrase from one of my favorite quotes by S. D. Smith, from The Green Ember – “It is what it is, but it is not what it shall be.” 

What I mean is that your story isn’t yet done. (For all in the drafting or editing stages, that is.) It may be messy right now, but one day, if you don’t give up, it may become someone’s favorite book. Envision what your story can be like. Keeping a mental image of future success will help drive you forward and push you through the less-than-delightful parts.

See your book for what it can be, not for what it is.


Don’t compare it to finished works from authors you love. You’re still in the building stages, constructing, with messiness galore. So why would you look at a completely finished book that’s been polished to a shine, and then wonder why yours doesn’t measure up? 

You can gain inspiration all you want from other books, but it never helps to compare.

As another quote from The Green Ember series says, “You are right here in your story. Don’t skip ahead.” (S. D. Smith, Ember Falls.)


At the end of the day, it’s a choice you must make for yourself. There are gonna be days when you think your writing is too bad to even find a label to call it. But if the passion in your heart to create this story is worth anything at all, you can’t stay stuck. You have to move forward, past the grueling, boring, agonizing moments.

The journey is worth it.

Your story is worth it.

You were made to shine your light by using your talents, to beat back this darkness with words and stories that counter the devil’s lies and draw people closer to God, even if that’s just through giving a sweet, heartwarming story that strengthens their beliefs that good things still exist! You never know how God will use your story. So press on, even when it’s hard.

Believe that God laid this story on your heart for a reason. You are the only one meant to write this specific story. It has potential. It is worth it.

And you, my dear friend, can do it.

Saraina Whitney is a passionate Christian writer who has a weakness for poignant stories with hints of true hope. She lives in the windy Illinois countryside with her family of fourteen. Known as the quietest of them all (except when she’s singing), she loves observing people and sharing inside jokes about movies with her siblings. She often spends her free time editing what she just wrote, rereading her favorite scenes from books, learning about Myers-Briggs personality types, or playing piano pieces from epic soundtracks. Her short story To Be Loved in the Tell Me You Love Me anthology is her first publication. Connect with her at

Your turn!

Do you ever hate your story, or do you always love it? How do you push through with writing it? Where are you at in your writing project right now? Let us know in the comments!

Blessings, Allyson


11 thoughts on “How to Write When You HATE Your Story | Guest Post

  1. Reblogged this on Saraina Whitney and commented:
    Last month, I shared a guest post on Allyson Jamison’s amazing blog, all about how to press on with writing even when you feel like your story is horrible! (Because I’ve been there, believe it or not. 😂) If that’s something you resonate with, you can find the guest post below!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank YOU, Virginia!! So glad you got something out of it!!! ❤ 😀 Ahhh, right? It's just incredible! 💖 (*sees Allyson's comment and vigorously nods* You do need to see it! 😜😆)

      Liked by 2 people

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