Good morning storytellers and inspiration finders, I hope you’re all having a wonderful week.
My week has been a very confusing one in regards to writing. Firstly, my third draft is going pretty well, in the sense that I am working on it every day and adding layers. It is also going pretty badly in that I am suddenly panicking about the pace, and writer’s doubt has weighed heavily on my mind. It’s also been an interesting week because ideas and inspiration for future projects have been flowing so rapidly, I can barely keep up with my note taking. Phew! What a week.
In light of my jumbled, writerly thoughts this week, I thought I’d dedicate this post to things all unpublished writers need to hear. These are things I’ve certainly needed to hear this week, so I hope they help you in your novel writing as much as they have helped me in mine.
This post is also going to contain three of my favourite quotes, because I was nominated by the lovely Aarika over at readtolivetowrite to post 3 quotes in 3 days, but unfortunately ran out of time. Do check out her wonderful blog, and I hope you enjoy the quotes embedded in my post today.
4 things all unpublished writers need to hear:
1. Don’t doubt yourself
This is easier said than done, and I know that as well as anyone! Writer’s doubt is a killer and it can zap your productivity and leave you feeling useless. Well, guess what? You’re not useless. You are an incredible creative and you can tell the story you want to tell, and you can get it written no matter how long it takes you. Be kind to yourself. You’ve got this.
2. The world needs your story
Yep. It does. Of course, you should write for you and you alone. As J.K. Rowling once said, “I just write what I wanted to write. I write what amuses me. It’s totally for myself.” But even when you’re writing for yourself, know that someone somewhere needs your story. It needs to be written, firstly for yourself but also for those potential readers. Keep going.
3. It doesn’t have to be perfect
My favourite writing quote of all time is this: “I’m writing a first draft and reminding myself that I’m simply shoveling sand into a box so that later I can build castles.” – Sharon Hale. It is a beautiful way to sum up the first draft. Just tell your story. This is the most important thing, the only thing you need to do. Once you have your ‘sand’ you can build it into something amazing. But no novel is ever perfect, so don’t whittle away too much time aiming for perfection.
4. One day, your stories will be published
This is not a personal guarantee, so don’t hold me to it! I can’t make this promise to any writer, and I can’t make it to myself. But I’m an optimist, so when I’m slogging the day away in my 9-5 I whisper to myself that one day, my stories will be published. This optimism is what drives me to work on my story every day, even if I can only spare a few minutes. There’s a wonderful moment in the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix film, where Harry tells Dumbledore’s Army “every great wizard in history has started out as nothing more than what we are now, students. If they can do it, why not us?”
And so, I say to you fellow writers, that every published author started off as we are now; unpublished. If they can do it, why not us?
This is a rather short but sweet post today, but I hope it’s had some effect. I would love to hear your advise, whether you are published, unpublished or somewhere in-between, so do comment below or contact me any time.
and until then,