Happy Wednesday, Everybody! It’s the first Wednesday of the month and that means that it’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group Day!
Purpose: To share and encourage. Writers can express doubts and concerns without fear of appearing foolish or weak. Those who have been through the fire can offer assistance and guidance. It’s a safe haven for insecure writers of all kinds. The co-hosts for May are Stephen Tremp, Fundy Blue, MJ Fifield, Loni Townsend, Bish Denham, Susan Gourley, and Stephanie Faris. If you can, stop by their blogs and see what their up to these days:)
So. I’ve been working on The Novel That Is Taking Longer To Finish Than Any Novel In The History of Novels. There are a myriad of reasons why it’s taking me so long to finish this book. Among them:
- Two pregnancies in two years = 18 months of pregnancy brain.
- A cell phone swiping toddler (who is also a well known flip flop thief) who zeroes in on my laptop’s “off” button every time she gets the chance. And then she shouts “Yaaay!” and claps with joy before stealing another flip flop and taking off running.
- A huge bout of what-to-write-next-itis.
- “Great” ideas that end up just being huge distractions when I realize that I should have just been writing in the first place.
- Doubt. Unspeakable doubt about…well, everything.
Number 5 is a biggie. Lately I’ve been rather down on myself for not having the time to pursue my writing career the way I’d like to. That includes writing more books, maintaining this blog and my social media profiles, and supporting authors that I meet online by reading and leaving a review for their books. And since I don’t have the time, doubt (fear’s wicked, wicked stepsister) seeps in and causes me to question whether or not I should be pursuing this writing thing at all since I can’t devote my all to it. To boot, I feel guilty about many other things that I should be doing (like getting my butt on Instagram or marketing myself locally), and because I can’t do every single thing I’d like to do, I start feeling like maybe I should just give up.
But having that kind of defeatist attitude just leads to failure! It’s a self-fulfilling prophecy and if I believe that I won’t be successful, then guess what? I won’t be! So even when I’m feeling like my to-do list is insurmountable and there just aren’t enough hours in the day to pursue all my dreams, I have to stop that train of negativity by reminding myself that I can do anything I set my mind to as long as I don’t quit. I also have to ask myself, “What’s the rush?” So what if I don’t get every single thing done today. Who cares? Doing a little each day is better than doing nothing at all. And then I start thinking of all the things I thought I couldn’t do and did anyway, like finishing my first two novels, and I realize that I can achieve all of my dreams. Just not in one day–or one year.
There’s so much power in our thoughts and the things that we speak that we have to be vigilant about what we think and what we say. Despite what your situation looks like, keep pushing.
Are there going to be days of doubt? Yes. Are there going to be setbacks? Yes. Are there going to be days where you feel like you’re doing all of this in vain and you should just give up? Absolutely! But nothing worth having comes easy. And things don’t just happen: they must be planned. Yes, you have to think positively but you also have to map out a plan and get to work. Also, don’t sit around feeling sorry for yourself. Instead, surround yourself with people who have your solution, not your problem, and go out there and live your dreams.Visualize your success. Speak it, write it, claim it. Wake up next day, repeat. Click To Tweet
Don’t believe me? Check out this inspirational letter that renowned science fiction author, Octavia Butler, wrote to herself. If you aren’t familiar with her work, she is one of the most lauded American writers and the first science fiction author to win a MacArthur genius grant. She also wrote one of my favorite books, Kindred, a novel about a modern black woman living in California who is transported back to slavery times.
Now excuse me while I go and take my own advice, lol. What about others? Do you practice thinking/speaking positively and writing down your goals?
And for those of you who need an extra boost of motivation, check out one of my favorite songs, “Go Get It,” by gospel duo, Mary Mary. Go get it!