I’m going to elaborate a little on my previous blog; “Why Should You Write?.”
That blog was done in a stream-of-conscious style from a feminine viewpoint. This could easily have been done from a male or even a child’s perspective; the demands on time and excuses, justifications we shall also call them, would be just as numerous.
“Don’t wait” means just that: Don’t wait.
What are you waiting for, anyway? Someone else to come up with your great idea? Time to suddenly grow longer so that you have 50 hours in the day to fill with your excuses, rather than getting down to the inspired work coming directly from your soul?
And don’t tell me you could do it if only you had more time. You’ll do it if you do it. Period.
If you need permission to write, I hereby grant you permission to write—nay, I demand you write. Every day. Every. Day.
We need your voice. You’re the only one capable of expressing yourself, expressing your interpretations gleaned from all the little pains and large pains, all the experiences seen from your perspective.
This is so important, I can’t tell you enough about it.
Just understand that even identical twins have separate viewpoints merely from the fact they have two bodies occupying different physical locations in space. We cannot (yet) directly experience someone else’s viewpoint except through their writing or speaking voice.
Identical twins don’t have identical personalities. None of us does. We have enough similarities that we can make associations; to empathize, to care about one another, and to care about what moves another person.
What moves you? Let me tell you: whatever got you to look at that paper in the first place and want to strike your mark in this world by drawing on paper those little curly letter groups we call words. And sentences. And paragraphs.
Time does a terrible thing to the writer: It dulls our initial impetus to do something. With enough time, we struggle to recall the spark and pathways where we wanted to take our inspiration. We struggle to find that drive that told us we need to get this idea, this mind paint, onto the paper.
This is why you cannot wait.
Don’t question the drive you have to do this thing. Don’t worry if anyone else is going to like it; you aren’t writing for them. You’re writing for yourself first.
Write for yourself and to hell with the rest of the world. That’s right. No one else can claim to be an expert in your voice. And if they do, they are dishonest, and you need to kick them in the shins. That’s the one thing you have over others no matter their education level, their worldliness, their degrees, their circle of friends, the shampoo they use in their hair.
You are the expert in your voice.
Don’t let anyone see your work; don’t let them critique it, until you are finished getting the thing out onto paper. Onto the computer. Into the world.
Get it out. You’ll feel so much better when you do. I promise you this.
Another reason to not wait is because proficiency is developed over time by repeating actions day in and day out. You get better at expressing your voice more clearly and honestly by exercising the muscles involved in the action. That means clearing in your life a little space, even 30 minutes will do, to exercise your voice onto paper. Into the computer.
Exercise your voice onto paper.
Each day that goes by without your doing this is another day lost to other things that don’t include exercising your voice. Your ideas.
Don’t do this to the rest of us. Know that you have worth, that your viewpoint is important, because its difference can stimulate the rest of us in ways we haven’t experienced. It can move us into pathways we have never walked.
What if Einstein kept quiet about his little ideas and didn’t tell anyone else, because he decided to listen to the teacher who said he wasn’t worth much? There are numerous examples of this in life, and the reduction of our voice starts and ends with your accepting another’s words as truth.
Your voice is its own truth.
The “don’t stop” part of this blog means exactly that: don’t stop.
Momentum in writing is gained by doing the work of writing. The day to day exercise of putting word to paper. The more we do something, the easier it is to keep doing something: An object in motion tends to stay in motion and all that. This is absolutely true, though. I’m on my 3rd novel in less than 5 months. In between, I’ve written a very good short story to add to the 11 other short stories I’ve already written.
This didn’t happen because I merely desired to write. That desire was only the spark to the kindling. I had to keep blowing on the flames to get a fire going. And once I had the blaze going, I kept adding logs to keep it going. Writing day in and day out is blowing on the flames and adding logs to the fire. It’s a necessary struggle at times, but the rewards are like nothing you’ve ever done before.
Artists understand the elation we feel after writing a good story.
And when its finished, it’s out. The hard part is done, and you will feel proud of the accomplishment. The time you made for the expression is not used up in ephemeral titillation. You will have something you can pass on to your children, to your friends, to your siblings and parents, to the world.
And you will get better with every story, every novel you write.