Think of all those grim quotes about writing and writers: Don’t do it unless you must. While envying everyone better or luckier, you’ll bleed behind that lonely typewriter. Besides, you’ll still need a “real” job, not to mention confronting agents, audiences, critics, and the ever present: “When are you going to finish that book?” Given all that gloom, since it’s not usually the money, just what do we get from being writers?
Writers perpetually listen, watch, wonder, recall, and speculate. Their minds are ever active, snapping up images, ideas, possibilities. What a romantic way to move through the world.
Writing well, like doing anything else well, requires practice, hard work, and lots of time. With everyone in such a rush and so distracted, isn’t it great to have one thing absorbing enough to make time disappear?
Most writers care deeply about craft. They seek not just publication and compensation but critique and continuous growth. They work hard. They revise, edit, and revise a little more. They get to feel great about what they do because of the care they take.
Sure, on lots of days you painfully struggle to meet a public or personal deadline. But sometimes, the writing glides or sizzles, producing a feeling that rivals anything you’ve ever experienced (including you know what).
If you could wish away your love of writing or your talent for it, would you honestly go for it? Of course not, because writers do it better.
Tip: Pause. Breathe deep. Remember why you feel lucky to be a writer. Because you are.