The Useful List of Things Nobody Tells You About Being Writer



I've been writing since I was 12 years old.
But I really don't know what to tell you in regards to the title of this post. So I'll rephrase to a question.

What Would I Put on My List of Things Nobody Tells You About Being a Writer?

Even after rephrasing I still had to ask my writer friends for ideas. Because the stuff on this list probably isn't going to be on any body else's list.

Everything on everyone else's lists are more than likely true, but stuff like this is always subjective because no one writer ever has the exact same writing experience.

There won't be anything about publishing, agents, editors or deadlines. This is just me(with help from friends), talking about writing.

1. You will be a different kind of writer than I am
There will never be a writer on this earth with your thoughts, your style, your concepts, or the way your story worlds exist. You will have a different personality, and just because your personality is different, three things will inherently separate us:
  • Your writing habits will not be the same as mine
  • Your style and voice will never sound like anybody else's but yours(not to say you cannot hone and perfect your own writing voice by the examples of the masters)
  • And the way ideas come to you will not be the same way in which they come to me or any other writer
So if you are new to writing, you need to know things WILL be different for you. And therefore, you should never, ever feel pressured to be just like that writer. Your favorite writer will probably write their habits, their processes, and the way stories portal themselves out of that writer, and you will probably think you should be the exact same way because hey, they're awesome! You want to be awesome, too. And you are. But you don't have to be awesome in the same way they are. And quite frankly, you won't. You will just have to be you.

2. You will go through times when creativity will just not be there
I never found this out. All the time I thought it was Writer's Block. Through all my writing experience I blamed Writer's Block, which can just be a nice general name. But I found Writer's Block to be something just a little bit different a little bit deeper through the years.

It wasn't a Block. It was a complete and utter dryness of any sense of what creativity even was. And you know what? That was ok. It took me awhile to understand that, too. You cannot bottle creativity. You cannot keep her. She is a free spirit and she will always be her own complete person. And that's ok, too. Just know that sometimes she will be there and sometimes she will not.

I wish she would stay forever, but she can't. So treat her well and don't rage against her dying light when she's not there. She'll come back. Soon. I promise. She will only ever desert you completely when you fail to believe she will ever come back at all.

3. There is no room for perfection in writing
There is however room for hard work, sleepless nights, early mornings, back-talking, incorrigible characters, too many pots of tea to count, too many blathering thoughts about not being good enough, and where the heck is creativity in all this? There is room for bettering yourself and your writing. And there is room for excellence.

4. Inspiration is only part of the writing process

There came a time for me when I physically had to go looking for answers to my story problems. Inspiration was no help and I had no luck with waiting for it. And seriously, after years of waiting, I got tired of it. I wanted more than what inspiration could give me, and I had to go looking for it.

You have to stop waiting and you have to go looking for answers to the questions pounding in your head, answers to the characters who just won't leave you alone. Don't wait for inspiration to strike. Read books. Find answers. You are a writer.

Love, Kayla

Comments

  1. Great points and put in a lovely way, too:-) I love how you voiced the truth about creativity - that sometimes, no matter how hard you try, it just isn't there and can't be forced. Too many times I've seen in advices for writers that you must, must, MUST write even if you are completely bled out (not sure if it's possible to say it this way in English, sorry) and there's just nothing left in you to give, no ideas, no energy. So I think it's really wonderful you pointed out that these moments of creativity just drying up and fleeing are normal and okay... it's really something writers, and indeed all artists I suppose, should be aware of.

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    1. You said it perfectly, Rosa! It was a hard lesson to learn, for me, often times I thought I was such a terrible writer. So I completely agree all writers and artists should know creativity is their friend, but not their constant companion.

      Thank you so much for commenting!

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