A recent writer’s group meeting challenged my big picture view of the craft and processes of writing for publication. The presenters spoke about specific tools and techniques (text formatting and setting goals for completing projects), while conversation around the topics rolled around those and more personal ideas (building platforms through blogs). I appreciate those whose personal efforts and advice reflect discipline and determination as they set and pursue goals. They have published books and articles (and received some rejection slips) to show for their hard work.
Rose-colored glasses have been set aside as I plunge in to do the hard work of putting thoughts down, following the outline, writing and revising. Progress seems slow… the end far, far away. Each month the adrenaline injection from meeting with other writers entrenched in their own processes energizes me and pushes me forward again. They have given me permission with their encouragement to follow a tangent, to write a related article as a break from the larger project. Part of creating credibility as a professional writer requires submitting writing for a broad audience. After all, what good is writing if not to be read?
Long ago the publisher of my high school yearbook for which I was a co-editor inspired us with pithy sayings. One has stuck in my head ever since: “If you want to be remembered, do something worth writing about or write something worth reading about.” I am aiming for the latter.
Honing my skills gives me courage to keep writing with an end in sight. As other writers have acknowledged, we never know it all. Humility comes naturally for those of us who in our later years are FINALLY doing what we said we would do in our prideful and starry-eyed youth. I have a book in process, articles scheduled and writing to be done. The time has come and now is…