The Care and Feeding of Your Assassin-Self

While so stealthy as to avoid a listing in Wikipedia, the assassin-self nevertheless runs wild when creatives are present.  The ratio is sometimes as great as 1:1.

For those who have had an assassin-self appear by their desk, or, worse, in public, with sour looks of pity and greasy sussurations of “not good enough,” and “shouldn’t even try,” a friend of mine* proposed the following regimen of care and feeding.


  • Swift curb kicks and regular repetition of “this doth not suck.”
  • Earplugs (for you)
  • Continuing to write.


  • Don’t.

What are your methods for dealing with the assassin-self?


*with many thanks, as always



  1. YES. I call this “doubtmonsters”, but “assassin-self” is another wonderful way to name it.

    I agree with all your “Care”. I also find it helpful sometimes to consult with a trusted friend – someone who knows my work, knows how writing works, and does honest incisive critique, and who can TELL me in no uncertain terms that my writing self, as a whole, “doth not suck”. When someone else says it to me, it feels real, and not just like the latest in a series of self-help mantras. YMMV, though, I can be alarmingly codependent at times!

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