It’s that time of year. A little inner reflection. Soul-searching, if you will. Writers of all stripes are known to stare out into the vast unknown of their empty page and wonder, “What am I doing?”
I’m never at a want for words when it comes to writing. I’m always stocked with more ideas than I have minutes in the day. But it doesn’t mean I approach these writing tasks with confidence. Not at all. I often wonder what I’m doing. Will any of these myriad words make sense? Will anyone find them interesting? Will I ever get out of my writing tendencies and make something truly creative? Will I ever stop using THAT word? Will I ever be good enough?
The answer to all of these questions is to look in the mirror.
The reflection you see is your answer. That reflection is you, or in my view, me.
I have to ground myself from time to time with these mundane thoughts which should be as plain as the sun is hot. But writing life doesn’t work that way, so I have to remind myself these few simple facts.
- I love to write.
- I was born to do this.
- I would continue writing if no one ever read another word I had written.
- I have a voice.
- I have unique experiences.
- I am not Hemingway or Steinbeck or any other of the greats.
- I don’t need to be them, either.
- I am not the sum of the doubts in my head.
- I am not the sum of the critiques from others.
- I am unlike any other writer who ever lived.
I just need to be that person. Me.
I always try to encourage young writers to be themselves better than anyone else can, and you will find that you have a unique voice, one worth sharing, one worth listening to. This is why the question “Will I ever be good enough?” is the wrong question to be asking.
Press on. Create like there is no tomorrow, because you only have a short time on this earth and we will be blessed to know how you look at the world. We’ll all be better for it.