Bela Lampert

Optioned Screenwriter / Yoga Instructor

A Writer’s Tactical Retreat

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A Writer’s Tactical Retreat

The term “tactical retreat” comes from the military.

It describes a situation in a fight where you decide to retreat because you realize that out of whatever reason the enemy forces are too strong at this point and you should withdraw.

But you’re doing it in a tactical fashion. It’s not everybody running for their life in an uncontrolled way. The group is still keeping up morality, fighting strength and cohesion to retreat – as the term suggests – in a tactical way.

So, in other words, you could say a tactical retreat is a small sacrifice in an orderly fashion without losing morale in order to gain something bigger.

Sounds a lot like writing to me.

We writers get stuck all the time. It’s part of our job description if you will.

We try 100 things that don’t work to find one that does.

Of course there are bigger “fails” (they’re not fails, they’re just possibilities that we don’t choose) and smaller ones and over time we learn that the smaller ones are not fails, just our job.

But still, there are bigger losses.

For example, having worked on a script for a long time, only to see that we don’t have any success with it.

Having done a million rewrites only to see the project be abandoned.

Whatever your situation is where you feel like you’ve lost a battle or even the war, do a tactical retreat.

Be aware that this is not your endgame. This is a smaller defeat and you’re giving something up to earn or protect something bigger.

The point here is above all to keep your morale up.

Even – and especially – in losses there are valuable lessons to be learnt.

So, whatever happens, don’t see it as a defeat, look for the lessons to take a away for your next “battle”.

Keep your strength, keep your morale, to retreat this time.

So you can regroup, gain strength and experience from that and attack better next time.

More ways to keep up your writing morale:

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