Good morning, good morning. Welcome to another episode of The Insecure Writer's Support Group! It's a monthly gathering of writers who are loud and proud when it comes to airing our insecurities to the world. And really, why shouldn't we be? They are a part of us, a part of who we are right now. Might as well own them, right?
Oddly enough I'm not dealing with any insecurities right now, writing or otherwise. The A-Z Challenge took over my writing for the month of April, as I knew it would. I learned some wonderful lessons this Challenge year - but I'll leave that for the A-Z Reflections Post on Monday May 9th :).
I started reading "The True Secret of Writing" by Natalie Goldberg at the end of April and finished it last night. As all her books are, it was wonderful. A compelling but thoughtful rally to get back to the practice of writing.
Why does that word turn so many of us off? I've always loathed "practicing" anything. I just want to DO it! And yet, I've learned over the years that in order to be able to do something, we must first make ourselves adept at it. And the only way to do this is, you guessed it, through practice.
Goldberg tells us that writing is nothing unless it is a practice. An ongoing practice. Something that we do every day. My former writing mentor told me that we're only writers if we write and that makes so much more sense now than it did 13 years ago. This may surprise you, but writing isn't about publishing or best sellers. Sure we want that. I want that. You want that. Writing is about WRITING. It is through the writing that we learn what it takes to construct a novel, a memoir, a collection of poems or stories or essays or recipes. And once we learn how to put it all together, we EARN the next steps: the publishing, the accolades.
None of those accolades though are possible without the practice. I've curled my fists and bit my tongue numerous times hearing someone mention, "Wish I could do nothing but write a novel and be rich. Must be nice." If they only knew how much pain and heart and blood and tears go into writing anything. If they only knew how many times we have to die before a novel is written.
Go forth this month and practice! Get out those ideas, those glimmers of truth. Even if it's awful, get it written! You can edit later. Just WRITE.
Be a writer. Write. Every. Day.
Practice, as they say, makes perfect. Maybe, but I do know that it makes for really good stories :)
Write on, my Friends!