Wednesday, October 17, 2007

If You Want to Write...

The third post in our weekly blog series about small ideas that can have big results.

Life vs. Writing

Many authors tell us poor unpublished folk to write every day and read a lot. Good advice. But what happens when there's this new movie out, or your best friend comes into town, or your grandparents want to take you to dinner? Or it's a beautiful day or you haven't talked to your mom in ages?

"Writing comes first," they say dramatically. I disagree.

If you want to write, writing needs to be a part of your life the way exercise, eating, leisure, school and relationships are a part of your life. The trick is balance. If you make writing your number one priority, and write in every spare moment that you have, you will produce a lot of work and probably get published. But you will burn out.

Writing is the way you take everything in your surroundings-- every experience, belief, emotion-- and culminate it into art. If you have nothing in your life except writing, "writing" will become the topic of every article and book you write! And there's only so much you can say about that.

I realize this is probably not a problem for most of you. But as you plod on your path to publication, make sure you have that balance. In your passion, don't forget to smell the roses and say hello to the little girl who lives down the street. Prioritize your writing, but never make it more important than people or God. Live, and write.

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