Thursday Thoughts

Writing is hard.

I’ve spent two weeks filling a notebook with ideas and then sitting at my computer only to get back up again because I just didn’t feel ready; my headspace just wasn’t where it needed to be.

A lot of people, upon asking what I do for a living, say things like, “Oh, that must be fun!” or “I’ve always wanted to do that!” and I kind of sit back and say to myself, ‘You know, it is fun, but it’s a damn challenge more often than not.’ As for the latter, I just ignore it these days. I have to ignore it; sometimes I get a little too ruffled because I feel it sort of discredits what I’ve set out to accomplish. Yes, anyone can write, but when someone mentions writing like a bucket list item, I get a bit sensitive. That’s my deal though, and I’m trying not to let it get to me as much, especially since a lot of those people aren’t intending to come across the way I take it.

But sometimes it truly is hard to get around those comments because writing is so hard. You can literally sit and pour hours into a piece only to hit the delete button because it just wasn’t coming together and no amount of editing could save it. You can literally sit and pour your heart out onto a page only to question whether anyone will give a crap about what you’re trying to say. You can literally sit and pour your soul into something that you’ll never see a return on because aside from you, no one does give a crap about what you’re saying.

And aside from the time spent and the amount of yourself you pour into it, there’s also the faith that has to be there that it’s worthwhile. You have to have some semblance of faith in your decision to take this art and craft it into a tangible career prospect because without that faith, it becomes hard to keep pushing.

Because writing is hard. It’s long hours and not-long-enough days. It’s deadlines and stress. It’s procrastination and self-discipline. It’s worry and self-doubt. It’s research and fact-checking. It’s editing and revising. It’s hard work and dedication. It’s criticism and feedback. It’s rejection and perseverance. And it takes heart and soul.

Writing is hard because every word you put on a piece of paper or type into a processor is a part of who you are, and I know that for me, I want every word I publish to the world to be composed the right way. I want it to provide the correct and most authentic message, present my genuine voice, and share my ideas in a way I can be proud of. My greatest fear as a writer is that I’ll embarrass myself somehow or damage my own credibility, or even force something to the point that it no longer reflects who I am. The amount of work that goes into this craft far surpasses simply putting words to a page and is the reason I respect anyone who sets out to make a career out of it.

Despite the drawbacks and seemingly negative aspects, I wouldn’t change my decision to shape my career around writing. It has given me so much more than I could imagine with any other pursuit and at the end of the day, it is my greatest strength and the one thing I know I can make a difference with. I am definitely not the greatest, nor will I ever come close, but I do hope that I can make an impact in at least one person’s life with what I have to say. And that hope is what helps to keep me going, along with my faith and the fact that I’m not really living unless I’m creating art with my words. It’s how I make sense of the world around me and understand myself in relation to the world, and without it, I would be absolutely lost.

It’s hard, but so worth it.