Thursday, April 26, 2012

The hardest part about being a writer...

“The hardest part of being a writer is not getting your commas in the right place but getting your head in the right place. Where help is really needed is in the area of countering anxiety, frustration, and despair.”
— Ralph Keyes, The Writer’s Book of Hope

Ok! I'm officially lost!
I’ve been messaging back and forth with a couple of my writer friends this past week and if there is one statement that describes us, it’s Ralph Keyes’ above quote.

Each of us are in different places in life: friend one is married and trying to get her freelance writing business off the ground while pursuing her passion of creative writing.

Friend two just finished her Masters program and beyond looking towards what’s next in her life, is trying to start writing again but doesn’t quite know where to begin.

And me, I’ve come to the realization that writing a story I’m passionate about becomes something much more challenging when I know there’s an editor waiting for it. The clock is ticking and I find myself more distracted than ever with everything life has decided to throw at me at once.

Though currently boxed up, I have book after book that helps with the edit process, gives tips on making your writing POP, and offers more prompts to get your creative thoughts moving at 3AM than I know what to do with. Each is an invaluable resource, but there are days when all that advice can just make you feel more overwhelmed, more frustrated, and more desperate.

In speaking with my friends this week, I’ve been reminded that as amazing as they are, How-To books don’t always hold all the answers. When it comes to the area of countering anxiety, frustration, and despair it takes a real person who is walking that same road right alongside you to lift you up and get you moving in the right direction again.

Who’s your companion? And what’s the best advice you’ve ever received (or given) when you’ve needed to get your head in the right place?


  1. I have been coming to that realization myself this week. How-to books are amazing...but even they can drag you down.

    Even just talking to someone else who is walking the same path can be a relief.

    Best advice I've received? "Writing isn't a thing that likes to torture you. It's you. If you write, you get results. If you don't, you have nothing. Without you, the writing doesn't exist." From my hubby. :) Somehow, it challenges me to write every time I think of it.

    1. You have a very wise husband, Jess! I'll have to remember that bit of advice in the future!