Sometimes we hit a brick wall with our writing and it has nothing to do with writer’s block. We’re not lost for words. We know what we want to write, but we’re paralysed by fear. What if nobody ever gets the chance/wants to read what we have written?
This is the bain of writers and other creators and it’s called self-doubt.
When you’re being paid a regular wage it’s easier to justify what you do – you’re getting paid – you’re buying food or paying for your kid’s education with your earnings. You can hold your head high knowing that your hard work is receiving a tangible reward.
But what if you’re not getting paid? What if you’re not getting published? What if those words you’ve crafted with your heart and soul are not being read by anyone but you – are not being heard by anyone except maybe your cat or your pet rabbit when you’re reading your manuscript out loud?
How do you justify being a writer?
The only way I know to respond to this is something that I firmly believe. You don’t have to justify being a writer. You don’t have to justify being you. Being a writer is not just a profession – it’s part of who you are – it’s an extra layer of skin that sits alongside your epidermis, dermis and hypodermis.
Of course we want to be published and we dream of making our mark in the world of literature – but what’s really important is being true to who we are and appreciating that our unique take on the world is just as valid and important as anyone else’s.
In spite of the hardships of being a writer, there are many benefits – and these are the things I hang onto when my self doubt is blooming and my optimism is at a low ebb – and I’m fairly sure that these conditions afflict even the most successful writers.
10 GOOD THINGS ABOUT BEING A WRITER
- You can get away with being an adult and still having imaginary friends
- You can stay in your pyjamas all day and work
- You can travel to places without leaving home
- You never get bored – there are always people to watch, things to be inspired by
- You can do your job anywhere – your writing device and your imagination can go with you
- It gives you the opportunity to escape to another world if you don’t like the one you’re in
- You learn to live like a squirrel – learn to survive on winter scraps
- You can control the weather – even if it’s only inside your story world
- You have the potential to make a difference to the way people think.
- You can use fiction to rewrite history in your favour
What you write is important whether you are well published or not. Stick with it and remember there are so many wonderful things about being who you are – a writer.
If you know any other good things about being a writer (published or not) or have any positive experiences to share, please feel free to post them in the comments section below.