Why You Need to Write Badly 

Writing a book can be hard, especially if you don’t know where to start. Many first-timers think their writing must be perfect from the get-go. Luckily, this is far from the truth. In this article, you’ll learn why it’s important to write badly.

3 Reasons You Need to Write Badly

It Gives You a Starting Point

Bestselling and award-winning children’s book author Lana Button once told me this about the writing process:

“There’s no perfect time. You just have to start … You need to give yourself permission to try things.” — Lana Button

As a writer, it’s essential to give yourself the time, space and permission to simply write. It doesn’t matter if it makes sense or if it’s disorganized. All that matters is that you start writing out your ideas, even if that means you write badly at the beginning.

When you give yourself the space to write badly, you give yourself a starting point which you can later edit to perfection. If you never start, you’ll have nothing to edit and no stories to share with the next generation.

Heed Lana’s advice. Give yourself permission to try things, even if that means writing badly. 

And if you aren’t sure where to go next, you’ll need to keep experimenting with more strategies to start writing your children’s book.

When You Write Badly, You Can Be Unapologetically Creative

Creativity is about freedom — feeling free to express yourself in various ways, like in writing. Sometimes that expression reads like romantic poetry and other times it reads like a third grade English project. 

But having that experience, of tapping into your imagination and giving creativity free reign over the page, prepares you to craft your best work. 


Because when you write badly and become unapologetically creative, you discover messages and stories you didn’t even know were inside of you. Allow yourself to write freely and badly to bring life to your creative process.

Remember, you can always revise later.

Writing Badly is How Every Successful Author Started

No one’s first draft is perfect. Even Agatha Christie, Tolkien, and Rowling started out with stories that needed significant editing.

When you write badly the first time around, it’s not a sign that you lack talent. It’s a sign that you’re starting the way you’re supposed to. 

Editing isn’t the first step — writing is.

Lana Button even said that her books, such as Willow’s Whispers and Tough Like Mum, took years to craft. As a matter of fact, the least amount of drafts she’s ever written for a single book was ten drafts. 

Take comfort in knowing that every author starts the same way: they write badly. Then, revision after revision, they craft the bestselling stories we have on our shelves today.

Your Next Step: Get Started

All you need to do now is write. Since I recognize how hard it is to find the time to write, I’ve put together a 90-minute Writer’s Craft Workshop.

In this workshop, you will…

  • Start on your children’s book
  • Develop your skills in writing for children
  • Discover the structure for putting a story together
  • Connect with other writers like yourself
  • Narrow down your ideas and put them on paper
  • Write your first draft in less than 90 minutes!

Click the button below to save your spot and commit to crafting an empowering children’s book (even if you write badly the first time around).

Related Posts

How to Stay Within the Picture Book Word Limit
Write a Picture Book in 1 Week: Day-by-Day Schedule
Point of View in Children’s Picture Books
How to Use Rhyme and Rhythm in a Children’s Picture Book