I was talking to my friend earlier about writing, and how it’s something that seems to be a lot harder than people give those of us who are actually and actively trying to make it as a career give us credit for.
I’ve probably written a blog about this before. I’ll probably write a blog about this again. You can’t be a writer and seriously want to make a career out of it if you don’t do two very vital things:
Write every day.
Read every time you get a chance.
I’m not saying that you can’t write without doing these two things… but if you really want to be a writer, want to be published, want to be an author… it’s so important. I’ve been writing consistently and as often as possible since 6th grade when I realized it was what I truly had a passion for. (before that, I wanted to be a marine biologist. I then realized that Kentucky was not surrounded by ocean. Ironically, I moved to California xD) I look at my writing, and I realize how much I’ve improved. It’s not just something that’s happened solely because of the fact that I’ve grown up. I’ve worked to perfect my craft in the way that someone works to perfect their art skills, their computer skills, their dancing skills. It’s something that you work at… and you have to work at it very hard. I feel like every day that I write, i’m striving to make improvements. Every time I edit, I’m seeing things that I need to change next time. Every time I get a critique, I’m adding that knowledge and advice to a giant repertoire of information to apply later. You have to have the drive to write as often as possible – you have to want to improve. You can’t just wake up one day and be the next J.K. Rowling and pat yourself on the back because you did a good job on suddenly writing your novel and instantly getting it published. I would say 999,999 times out of 1,000,000 that will never happen. And congrats to that one person who does accomplish that goal… let me know how you did it.
The other important factor to writing is to read… and to read often. It opens you up to the world that you want to be involved in, it shows you techniques, it expands your vocabulary, it gives you an idea of the market (though it’ll change constantly), it will give you something to aspire to. You need to read. You need to read as often as you can. You need to voraciously devour books like a person getting their last meal. I think that reading is just as important as writing every day. It improves and broadens your mind. You wouldn’t see a computer programmer who never looked at computer information. You wouldn’t see a professional football player who didn’t check out other players… you have to research your field.
The last thing, of course, is getting your social network platform. Getting your name out there is important now-a-days… it really is, but I’ve already touched on that in a blog. It just kills me when I hear people constantly saying, “Oh, yeah, I’m an author, too! (but I really don’t want to write right now. But I wrote this short story in highschool….) or… my least favorite thing, “Well, it’s not like it’s that hard to be a writer… you just have to put words to paper.”
I write every day that I can. I have people constantly getting commissions from me. I work HARD at what I do, and I do as much research (in reading, in marketing, etc) as I can. As writers, my readers, I know that you understand this.
Do any of you have this same problem? How do you deal with it? Please, leave your answers in the comments.
Until next time, ending my little rant! Keep Reading and Writing!
Author Amanda McCormick
11 thoughts on “Writing is Hard”
Reblogged this on The Writing Website of Jubilee J and commented:
HALLO THIS IS IMPORTANT!
It is. And it’s so important. A lot of the time people don’t think about it.
I honestly don’t think about this. It’s like when you watch a movie with commentary and you suddenly realize, years and years and thousands of people’s hard work and love and sweat and tears went into it and you go…wow. Same thing with books, except, we rarely get a commentary to express ourselves on…which is where blogs come in, I suppose.
Well that right there is the thing, isn’t it? There are so many people in this world who look at a book, read it, appreciate it… and don’t take the time to think… damn, that was months or even years of that person’s life… pouring their heart and soul out onto the page, bleeding their emotions to a pen so that we could enjoy this story. It takes someone a day to read a novel, but if we as writers do our jobs right, the characters stay with them for a lifetime… and yet a lot of people just don’t really think of how much work it is. Or even worse, think, “Ohhhhh, I can do that soooooooooooooooooooooo easy!” x.x
It’s true! I realized white recently I was all talk and no follow through. I started this blog to remedy that and read and write as often as I can.
Well that is honestly all that you can do is to find a place to start and go from there. As soon as you start making that real effort, you’re on your way!
Heh, I always wanted to have horses, then I realized how much work they take. Now, my brother has a horse farm and I spend any free time after work and being a mom & wife, writing. And can I just say that I finally read The Great Gatsby? Didn’t think I’d like it then Gatsby shows up and all this shit starts going down, then I got to a line that just epitomized the great writing going on for me, and it was deceptively simple. Amazing writing, and the man was all about the re-write/edit. Bloody inspirational.
I’m trying really hard to work on this. I used to write every day in high school, partly because it was my escape. I also read CONSTANTLY!! Of course, with life, school, and a baby, it’s harder to do so. I’m working on writing – I started a blog. And I’ve been reading more. So, hopefully, I’ll get back on track!
Well, the best that we can do is try. I know, especially as unpublished writers, we don’t always have the luxury of being allowed our precious 8 hours a day to write (imagine it as though it were a full time job.) Even I can’t always sit down and write even though it is my job x_x, because it’s a freelance thing that isn’t what is paying the bills. While we struggle and strive to get to that mythical ‘there’, we just have to do the best we can. I think that you’re doing a great job, what with all of the responsibilities on your plate – having your blog is a huge step in the right direction… and by Goodness, I will hassle you into doing NaNoWriMo in November for your novel xD
Thank you for an excellent post. It is crucial for writers to read every day and write every day. You are correct–writing is extremely hard work, but it is also wonderful, enjoyable, and essential.
I think that in the end it comes down to the fact that the rewarding feeling when you complete any amount of words at the end of the day makes it worth it. I had to take quite a bit of time off from writing/reading for Christmas and illness, and I can feel the fact that I’m having to shake the rust out of my gears to get started up again. ❤ Thank you for the comment!