Thanks to another fellow blogger’s recommendation I picked up a copy of Why We Write– a compilation of 20 acclaimed authors on how and why they write what they do. This book is an easy read filled with encouragement for other writers. Each author shares a snapshot of their writing career- the highs and lows in their writing journey. Their stories and insights inspired me that I am not alone in many of my struggles I often find myself in. I was drawn into their transparency of struggle and their deep conviction of staying true to writing for yourself and not for anyone or anything. It was fun and insightful to jump into their worlds and hear their routines and writing/home-life balance. After each author’s introduction and snapshot they conclude with a section called Wisdom for Writers where the author shares two to three helpful tips for other writers. I found the wisdom for writers section to be the most practical and encouraging for me in my writing journey. Here are a few I marked in my book that stuck out to me.
>> “You can only write regularly if you’re willing to write badly. You can’t write regularly and well. One should accept bad writing as a way of priming the pump, a warm-up exercise that allows you to write well.” -Jennifer Egan
>> “Write even when you don’t feel like writing. There is no muse. It’s hard work. You can always edit a bad page, but you can’t edit a blank page.” -Jodi Picoult
>> “Don’t portray yourself as who you want to be. Portray yourself as who you are”. – Kathryn Harrison
>> “There are no secrets and there are no shortcuts. As an aspiring writer, what you need to know it that learning to write is self-taught, and learning to write well takes years.” – Sue Grafton
>> “Writing is a long-term investment. If you stick with it you will reach the level of success you need to.”- Walter Mosley
Happy Writing! Katie