Many of us love to write and aspire to cultivate our thoughts through the written word. But most of us feel intimidated by the process, imagining that if we don’t have the villa off the coast of Italy and a cup of coffee steaming as we begin our deep musings, why bother? Because I once was that person myself, someone who wanted to write but was terrified to actually do it and thus put it off year after year, I’m sharing five motivators to actually get to it and procrastinate no longer. With GIFs.
1. There is never going to be that large expanse of time you think you need to put pen to paper.
Stephen King wrote during lunch breaks and whenever he could squeeze the time in. [Now there was a writer, who had endless stretches of time to write, write, write, and we all know how that turned out…]
2. Your writing might be bad, but there’s only one way to improve it.
Just like any other craft in the world, the more you work at it, the better you get. Even if you find your first forays into writing so atrocious you want to shred your laptop, keep on writing, the more you write the better you write.
3. Inspiration comes to those who seek it.
My biggest challenge into starting any of my projects was the simple fact that I had to figure out what to write. While my fiction writing does sort of just come to me like a bolt of lightening, the bolt alights because I’m sitting somewhere quiet, scratching my head and brainstorming without distraction. The more you sit quietly with the intention to write, the faster that inspiration can come to you.
I used to think that if I put all my ideas into one book, I would never have any other ideas for any other book, but the more you write, the more ideas come. And the more you write, the easier those ideas come and the more confidence you have. Like running, biking, or rock climbing, once you make it a part of who you are, you find you cannot live without it.
5. It can take a long time to finish the memoir, or the novel, but the time will pass either way.
The biggest stumbling block to getting started on writing is the fear of failure, but that is because we are imagining the grand writer with the cigar dangling from his lips. We’re thinking of Hawthorne and Walden and Austen. But writing is writing and if it’s from the heart, and done with dedication, it is worthwhile. Our first audience is ourselves. Instead of comparing ourselves to literary greats we should fork our own roads and write out our truths, pretty, messy, random, coherent writing. Maybe I’m biased, but all writing borne of dedication and love and sincerity, is worthwhile.
Aisha Saeed was born and raised in South Florida. She writes YA and is represented by Taylor Martindale of Full Circle Literary. You can read more of her writing here, or follow along on Facebook here, or Twitter here. She lives in Atlanta with her husband and sons.