It can be frustrating, right? We write and we wait, write and wait, write then wait some more. What each of us are waiting for may differ slightly, but the angst is common.
We write and wait two months for literary agents to tell us “we appreciate you sending us your manuscript, but…”
We write and wait four months for publishers to tell us “we will not be accepting your manuscript at this time.”
We write and post on Medium and wait for the recommends and comments. We write on our own blogs and wait for shares. We send emails to other publications so we can write on their sites for the same reactions.
Then after we’ve finished writing, and writing and writing, we get another idea. Something in the back of our creative mind tells us there’s another way, a faster way, a way that will make more money without the waiting.
So we jump into that atmosphere because it’s a “good plan,” and this writing thing is taking to damn long. And we don’t have enough followers and not enough people are responding and who the hell wants to wait like half a year for a publisher to say no?
A few nights ago I laid down in my bed with the lights off when I got the urge to write. I grabbed my phone and started typing. I didn’t write with any structure, didn’t edit or even read it over once I was done. I just wrote.
I’ll probably never publish that piece, or maybe I will. Who knows. I just felt like writing and I did. Without the pressure, without any expectations, without any agenda other than to get those thoughts out of my head the best way I know how.
I think it’s easy to get frustrated as a writer. To get distracted by the waiting, the rejections, the seeming lack of interest in our offerings. But my humble suggestion is to stay focused and keep writing.
This industry is not for putters. You need to play the long game here. It takes time to find your voice, consistency to make your voice heard, and patience for your voice to soar. But in the mean time, just focus and keep writing.
And sometimes, or maybe often, remind yourself that you love this. If you are a true writer, you know that you didn’t choose this path, this path chose you. There is no scenario that makes sense in which you ever stop writing. So wake up and write, go to bed and write, sit on the train and write, and do it for yourself.
And know that you don’t need to wait for anything to happen. It’s already happening.
Till next time…