Saturday, May 14, 2011

The Writing Life

As all of us writers know...writing is hard.

Yes that is the truth. We've all heard our friends or family say, "I'm going to write a book!" But then...they don't. That or they start something and give up. Sometimes they do actually have a good story but they don't have the time to write.

Sure anyone can say they will write a book. That's easy. But actually sticking your butt to that chair and writing something is harder than it seems. It requires time, effort, and imagination.

I always find it amusing when I say "I'm a writer" and people give me these weird looks and ask me what I'm writing. Usually (to my own horror) I'll mumble something that probably sounds really bad and then the people never ask again. Or they'll say, "I tried writing something once." I'll then ask them what they wrote and they'll mumble something and usually it ends in, "Yeah, well I stopped writing it because *insert excuse*."  Every once in a while I'll find a person who actually loves trying to write something.

Once a classmate of mine asked me how much of my book I had written. At the time I had written around 60k words and when I told them, they did a double take. It was so funny!

Anyways, back to the subject!
There are also reasons why we want to write a book. Hopefully it's because you love to write and you want to share it with the world. (Or maybe not, that's fine too). Most people want to get published for the fame and money. And here's the truth: If you're writing for either fame or money, you'll be waiting a long time. Unless you happen to write the next Harry Potter or Twilight, fame will come within a long time. For some they may never get really famous and others they're making 6 figure paychecks.

Most of the time I joke about "And when I'm published, I'm going to be rich and famous". I know I'll likely not be as rich or famous as J. K. Rowling, but I can always dream about it. In the meantime, I'm writing because I love writing. It's fun and exciting. And it's satisfying to be able to sit down and write something that will hopefully be just as wonderful to someone else as it is to me. Another reason I want to get published (and it may not be the best reason in the world) is because I want to do something with my life. I don't want to be one of those people who are only known to their family and close friends.

One of my English teachers once told me while talking about Mark Twain that "they wrote because they wanted to be remembered. Because through their books, even after they're dead, they still in a way, live on." And I guess that's one of my reasons. I want to be remembered for something special. But don't get me wrong! I write because I love to!

There are also some things you need to remember when writing. Although that book may seem like the most important thing in the world at the moment, you need to remember that there is other things in life. Some things to remember:
1) Discipline- Don't wait for inspiration. Write as often as you can and write anything.
2) Take care of your health- It's hard to write when you feel ill or sluggish. Besides, excersise, food, and taking a shower are not only going to make you feel better, but you'll be able to write better.
3)Don't get stuck in a routine- If you start needing coffee before you can write or a certain picture, you're going to have trouble writing when you don't have those things.
4) Patience- If you're wanting to write for fame and fortune, you'll have most likely have a long time to wait. But if you write because you love to, you'll enjoy it more because that's what you love doing. So while you're waiting for your book to catch on, keep writing!
5) Don't compare yourself to others- Sure a little competition is good. But if you're constantly asking "why can't I write as good as she can?" You're going to feel like crap and probably stop writing.
6) Don't forget your friends and family- Remember to spend time with them from time to time! Say you don't get published, then who will you turn to if they've moved on without you? And besides, you might get good inspiration from them!

Well that's all I got for today!
If you're not already a writer, have you ever tried writing something? What was it and are you still trying to write it? Have you ever wanted to be a writer or are you more happy reading other's works? Have you ever had this great idea for something but didn't know how to start it? Do you have any friends who write?


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