"However great a man's natural talent may be, the art of writing cannot be learned all at once." Jean Jacques RousseauWell it seems I’ve stirred up some trouble again. Just when I think the stew is cooked, I go and throw another coal on the fire.
As a writer, my goal is to encourage other writers, and try to help them build the confidence in themselves that will get them to the next level of their journey. My aim is to motivate them, teach them, and give them the best information that I know, to see to it that they keep writing until their fingers bleed.
The first thing I tell the new writer is that if you don’t have a thick skin, can’t handle criticism, can’t take the heat when it is bearing down on you, then writing is not the field that you’ll want to enter into, no matter how much you like writing. Sure your mom loves your writing, your friends say what a natural you are, and you yourself feel like you can do it, but when a bomb drops, you’re the first to run for cover.
Writers need to be able to handle the heat. More times than not, you will hear the words, “This could use some work.” or “Might I suggest you try this instead.” These are not words saying your writing is bad, these are writers who know what they are looking for and want to help you become a better writer and assist you in getting from point A to point B.
As much as we love our moms, they do not know what they’re looking for when it comes to storyline, plot or structure. Their child has written a masterpiece and they think it is the Goldmine of the century, but then you hand it to a critique group and you find, it needs work? “But my mom said...” Forget what your mom and friends say, listen to what your writer friends say.
This week I may have lost a writer in the making. I can only do so much to stretch out my hand and offer comfort where they might need it. The rest is up to them, and I’m hoping with the strength and comfort the writing community offers to people, this person will find his way back to doing what he loves.
Writing isn’t about always being RIGHT, it isn’t about money, and it certainly isn’t about ego, it is about doing what you love and sharing it with others. Your hard work is rewarded by people loving your work, being touched by something you wrote or paying you an honest compliment.
We all, as writers, need to hear the good stuff, as much as we need to learn from the bad stuff. Mistakes are made and you move on. You’re a writer! Show the world what you’re REALLY made of!