The full quote from Zadie Smith goes like this:
I never attended a creative writing class in my life. I have a horror of them; most writers groups moonlight as support groups for the kind of people who think that writing is therapeutic. Writing is the exact opposite of therapy.
Lately my writing experience has been something like having teeth pulled: nothing to look forward to, nothing pleasant. As writers and as human beings we all suffer crises of confidence. I’ve been working against a deadline on a piece I pledged to complete. Ideas were dried up, and the story I thought I’d write wasn’t the one I ended up writing.
I’m moderately happy with what I completed, though. It’s out for review before I submit, and so I wait for feedback. To me, this is the most anxiety-producing piece of the whole puzzle. I think it’s okay, but what if no one else does? What if I really am terrible at this? What if what if what if–the internal monologue is endless and not very helpful.
All I can do is shut it down and go about the business of my everyday life. That’s all any writer can do, I guess.