Striving for Perfection

Monday, January 22, 2018

Only God can create perfection, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t strive for it.

Following up on last week’s blog, I don’t understand why anyone would want to just sit down and write a novel without learning the craft first. Don’t those people want to write the best book they can?

I’ve said before, and I still believe, that there comes a point at which you have to stop writing that still imperfect book and start sending it out. If you wait for perfection, it will never happen. But I also believe in writing the best book I can at the time and under the circumstances. In other words, I strive for perfection even though I know I won’t achieve it.

Vince Lombardi said, “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection, we can catch excellence.”

When I was in college, I found a quote to live by and wrote it inside my literature book, which I intended to keep forever. But I lost the book at some point and I can’t remember either the exact wording or the author of the quote. I think the author was either a philosopher or a scientist, although I’m not sure. Unfortunately, I’ve never been able to track it down, but it was on the same lines as the Lombardi quote. Here is a paraphrase from my very imperfect memory:

Those who strive for perfection will never reach it but will draw ever closer, while those who don’t strive for it are doomed to mediocrity.

If anybody out there can identify the quote, I’d be eternally grateful.

And I’ll keep striving for perfection.


The photo is © 2013 by Kathryn Page Camp.

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