This morning I had the privilege of hearing author Shawn Smucker speak at a local Writer’s meeting. It wasn’t a “how to” workshop, or the Top Ten Tips on getting published. It was just a guy sharing his journey of writing, publishing, then writing some more. And ya know what? It’s exactly what I needed to hear. I may not have walked away with pages filled with notes on the do’s and don’ts of writing, but hearing his stories and thoughts were exactly the encouragement I needed. And it just so happens I wrote a few of his thoughts down. 😉
1. Be Brave. Yes, you’ve heard this a million times over, but now you need to believe it. To write is to bear your very soul on paper. It is to put your most secret thoughts into a place where anyone in the world can view them. It is scary. Very. scary. But it’s what we do. Writing is what makes the pulse in our veins, continue to flow. It is what makes us writers, human. If you have something to say, say it.
2. Every time you put pen to paper, someone might not like it. Yeah… I’d like to revise this to say ‘someone will not like it‘. There’s just no way that every single person who ever reads what you’ve written, will like it or even agree with it. There will always be someone who thinks they could have written it bigger, better or just differently. And that’s ok. It’s what makes us writers. We all have different opinions on things and we have our individual thoughts. It’s what makes the world of words a beautiful place. I would hate to read the same old thing all the time, wouldn’t you?
3. You will fail. Do not be afraid. Again, ouch. I know we would all love to live in denial and believe that failure is not an option for us. But the sooner you can accept the reality that you will fail – many, many times – the better writer you will be. With each failure, the strong you will become. Not that picking yourself back up will ever be any easier. It won’t. But the change you see in yourself throughout each trial you face will be the strength you need to meet your next success. Stop being afraid to fail.
4. Stop trying so hard. God’s got this. Phew. Just reading that phrase takes a million pound weight off my shoulders. If you’re anything like me, you try and try and try. Often to a fault. Soon enough, whatever you’re trying for has become the main focus of your life, taking your eyes off of more important things, like family and faith. And that’s just not where God would have you. God is big. Creator of the universe big. Do what you gotta do to get to writing and building your platform, but at the end of the day, let God do the rest. He totally can. And it’s so amazing to see His hand in your life.
What are your thoughts? Do you have any words of wisdom to pass on to other writers and aspiring authors? What phrase has stuck with you and helped guide your writing path in your journey with words? Feel free to comment below.
Be brave. You’re gonna fail. And that’s ok, my friends.
Interested in learning more about Shawn Smucker and his writings? Check out his website here!
Happy reading, friends!