I think it’s rather obvious that I dropped the ball on this little blog project of mine. That happens on a fairly regular basis for me. I don’t juggle well. It’s very hard for me to shift focus successfully. But, here we are. I’m going to take a minute to reread chapter 7 of A Writer’s Guide to Persistence, and then I’m going to do Work It #7.
It is so wonderful to be reminded that ALL WRITERS STRUGGLE at times. I needed to reread the “Seek to Serve” chapter so badly. After reading it, I feel as if a massive, oppressive weight that has been bearing down on me for months is gone.
Anyway, here goes Work It #7:
What are some immediate ways you can use your writing to serve? Make a list in a notebook right now. Pick one way, and chop it into smaller goals. Say you’d like to host other writers on your blog; decide what themes and topics you’re interested in and how often you’d like them to guest post. When you’ve made this decision, put out a request via social media, e-mail, and word of mouth.
Or you can make a list of advice you’d give to a burgeoning writer who is on a path similar to yours. What would you tell her? What mistakes have you made that she could avoid? Is there someone you know in real life who would benefit from your advice?
Lastly, consider writing a blog post or essay that you can share, or post about a lesson you learned the hard way, how you got through it, and what you would do differently if you knew then what you know now. Focus on how you felt, if and when you became discouraged, and what you did to pull yourself out of a tailspin.
I definitely want to do all of the above! As for the guest posts, I think I want most of my themes to center around writers struggling, and the ways they found to overcome their struggles. I struggle a lot more than I would have cared to admit before reading this chapter, and the majority of my posts will probably center around those struggles and my choice to persevere, as well.
The biggest pieces of advice I want to share with burgeoning writers everywhere are these: 1. NEVER GIVE UP and 2. ALWAYS TELL THE STORY YOU WISH TO TELL! If you want your writing dreams to come true, never stop working for them, no matter what, and don’t let current market trends dictate your story to you. Tell the story you want to tell. Tell the story that you’re absolutely in love with, and don’t worry about whether or not it fits with the current trends. If you tell a story that comes from your heart, and you focus all your passion and devotion on that story, writing it will make you happy, and I guarantee you that there are readers out there who will love the story just as much as you do.
And now for the blog post! I cannot enumerate the ways in which rereading this chapter and doing this Work It Exercise have helped me today. I’ve been in a depressed slump for a while now. Why? I haven’t been sticking to my writing practice, and that’s made me miserable. I haven’t made the effort to keep to a schedule. I’ve been lazy, and that’s made me feel horrible about myself. This isn’t anybody’s fault but mine. I have done this to myself, and I had to be the one who decided to fix the problem. I allowed outside circumstances to dictate my internal reality, and that brought my writing practice to a grinding halt.
Now, however, I am choosing to use my time better, I am choosing to rededicate myself to my writing practice, I am choosing to have a writing schedule, and I am choosing to be a writer. If you’re in a slump like the one I was in, I highly recommend that you read A Writer’s Guide to Persistence by Jordan Rosenfeld.