On Being a Writer

As a writer, every now and then you have to take a leap.  When someone asks you to write something, and then you do, it is like being a kid again.  You post it.  You wait, hoping someone is reading it.  And then, with breath held as you stare at the screen, you watch for a like.  You think, “Oh please, at least one.”  And you’re hoping the critiques aren’t too harsh.  “Maybe no one will be interested in that topic.  Oh, why did I publish that?”

And then it happens; a like, and another, and another.  You’re elated.  People like me!  People think I have valid things to say!  Someone out there actually wants me to write to them about what I know!  Okay, this may be a little tongue-in-cheek, but still fairly accurate.  Being a writer means pouring out something that you hope someone will want to read.  It’s a big leap of faith.  Every time.

I think the hardest things to write are the pieces you’re paid to write on topics with which you’re unfamiliar.  There’s always that voice in the back of your head, you know the one, telling you that other people who really know this topic will hate what you’ve written.  It is stressful, but you just need to do your research and trust your gut.

As writers, we spend most of our time “in our heads” having private conversations about whatever task is currently taking up residence.  Or mulling over a scene we just wrote, or are struggling to write.  This can be very difficult for other people to understand.  They find us odd as we mumble to ourselves about conversations no one else can hear.  I guess you’ll just have to be patient with us until the conversation hits the paper.  And please, don’t let the critiques be too harsh.


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