Writing is hard. Right now I’m neck deep in writing and editing my second book, The Light is Winning.
And the thing about writing books, especially books loosely placed in the memoir category, is that they are equal parts art and therapy. You gotta dig deep into the story, and that brings you face to face with all kinds of demons. It’s good work, but it’s hard work.
Even if memoir isn’t your writing genre (in blogs or books), you are bound to encounter obstacles when you face up to the keyboard day after day. The temptation is to give way to those obstacles and stop, at least for a while. But you mustn’t stop.
You’ve gotta keep writing.
In fact, you should be writing write now.
1. Writers write. The worst thing you could possibly do as a writer is find excuses to stop writing. I’m not saying that breaks are bad – but pace is better. Find a pace that works and then stick to it, despite all obstacles. Just keep writing. Don’t stop!
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You will absolutely need to replenish your reservoir in order to keep that pace, and reading is the absolute best way to do that. But instead of using depletion as an excuse to stop writing (as I have often done in the past), simply look for ways to increase your reading. That may mean scaling back on some other things, so…time to prioritize.
2. Inspiration comes to seekers. There is a certain exhilaration that comes with inspiration – it’s one of the most wonderful experiences for any creative person. But 9 times out of 10, inspiration doesn’t come to those who are doing nothing. It comes to those who seek it out.
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And by seek it out, I mean: write. As I work though this new book, it’s a process of putting tons of words down and seeing where they go. Sometimes they go nowhere, for a while. Then, something clicks. Then, inspiration HITS. When you write and keep on writing, doing the work even when it’s hard, the inspiration will hit. You can’t predict when it will come, but I guarantee you, it will come. Seek (write!) and you shall find!
3. Calling is 99.9999% commitment. Ok, maybe that percentage is high, but it’s basically true. Living out your calling and honing your craft is not something magical that happens to you; it’s something practical that you commit to. It’s a decision, and a daily one at that: are you committed to being a writer?
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Don’t take this as browbeating because that’s not how it’s intended. Everyone’s writing pace will be different based on their schedule and lifestyle, based on the circumstances and specifics of their life and calling. But if you don’t have a pace that you’ve intentionally committed to, you won’t write. And you won’t walk fully into the calling that you know you have. Map out your pace, and then…commit.
Start writing write now!