Once you declare yourself a writer and start typing words on a page, it’s easy to feel like an impostor.
Writing isn’t that intimidating until you label it. This is how I feel as I go through the book writing process, but it is important to own the journey you are on.
Just as confidence ignites passion, doubts can squelch creativity.
All writers doubt.
As far as I can tell, every single article, story, or anecdote I write absolutely sucks until I get to the final product. Even then, I am barely able to look at the published version, and sometimes I don’t, for fear that it stunk up the whole magazine.
By no means am I an expert, and as I said, my published body of work is just a baby compared to many accomplished writers. This is where my perspective comes in, I just want to offer encouragement to those who are in the same shoes as me.
I mean really, who am I?
Calling myself a writer is hard for me. I mean, I drink coffee and spend countless hours at my laptop in my PJ’s, but really, who am I to say I’m a writer? Well known people are out there making way more money than I am (believe me) who actually have book deals and–you know–readers.
Once I committed myself to finishing this book, though, I decided to call myself a writer. Because if I am not a writer then what am I even doing here? The problem is that I still have trouble taking myself seriously, and it is even harder to explain to everyone else what in the world I am doing. It usually goes something like this.
Curious Person: So you graduated (I was 36 when I graduated by the way). What are you doing now?
Me: I am writing a book.
Curious Person: Oh. So do you have a real job too?
Okay maybe they don’t outright say it, but I am pretty sure they are thinking it. And if they aren’t thinking it–then apparently I am. The thing is, I do write for an income through a few regular freelance jobs, and while I am grateful for the work–absolutely nothing compares to the days when I can just totally focus on writing my book.
Well…and Facebook…and sometimes Instagram…and then that video on You Tube about the dog who gets all emotional when his person comes home from deployment. I cried like a baby.
Justifying my passion for this book, though, is like trying to explain the connection between a mother and her child. I love it because it is part of me. In a sense my book is my heart poured out into 140 pages (give or take).
Oh and I love my kids too, even more than my book. Most of the time at least.
Believe me I give props to those who have spent years working their way through the publication process, because they are the experts in this field who have already traveled many of the roads I am currently on.
Sometimes I want to jump out of the car before I get hurt. However, I have also researched enough to know that rejection is common to most–if not all–successful writers. Every one of their success stories share a common thread–they didn’t give up.
So I am not going to give up, and don’t you give up either. One day we will have our own story of success to write, and it will finely written, except the first draft. Because first drafts suck.
Accomplished writers are great at sharing their insights.
Check out these writers for some great advice and tips.
- Tricia Goyer. Author of the best seller to movie Mom’s Night Out, she has published more than 30 books and was a featured speaker on Focus on the Family. She only offers advice to new writers, but she is incredibly personable on social media with fans. She also regularly doses out writing tips on Facebook. You can read some of her tips here and find out how to connect with her.
- Jenny B. Jones. Author of the Sugar Creek Series, and my personal favorite, the In Between series starring Katie Parker (I could not stop reading these books until I bought out the entire series and wasted three days or as I like to call it researched writing methods.) She offers writing advice here and she is great to connect with on social media, although she isn’t as responsive as Tricia Goyer, she is absolutely hilarious.
- Jeff Goings. First of all, Jeff Goings is only free if you keep him that way. He does have a monthly service and you will get a lot of emails about that (and if you’re interested I think his service is valuable) but in the meantime he gives some great advice about how he started a blog and ended up a best selling author and speaker. You can find his website here.
- Blogpress. Blogpress is provides my WordPress layout and it is the only service (other than my domain name) that I pay for monthly. This is because I am completely clueless about the technical part of writing and blogging. Not only does the service include blog training but coaches Dan and Jennifer give amazing personal support. You can look into them here.