The Novice Writer’s Manifesto

Everything that I read about writing tells me that I’m not a “real” writer.

Because I don’t put words to paper every day.

Because I allow writer’s block to overwhelm me from time to time.

Because, for now at least, I have no choice but to let writing be a hobby instead of a career.

And I get it, I really do. I see where, if you’re looking from the outside, in it can seem like I’m not putting as much effort into this whole word craft thing as I should be.

But with all due respect, sir, ma’am, you were one of the lucky ones. And I’m not saying that your journey to wherever you happen to be right now was all peaches and cream because I know that it wasn’t. But at some point in time and space, the stars aligned for you and someone liked what you had to say. And I’m very, very happy for you but my path can’t be like yours.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m not trying to make excuses. I realize that a lot of the time I’m lazy. That I have to shape up, as it were, and put the pen to paper or fingers to the keyboard if I’m ever going to amount to anything. And oh, I do. You should see how fast the words fly when that pinprick of light widens into a pool and then a gushing stream of insight and inspiration and conversation and gibberish and what have you.

But those moments are fleeting.

I ask you, though, to watch me carefully. My mind is never idle. At any one moment a torrent of words is crashing through my head as I taste them each individually looking for that one, that one word that will light the spark and maybe one day set the world on fire.

Or maybe at that moment I’m acting as God and an incubator in one, nursing and creating and fleshing out these beautiful, heartbreaking characters whose stories deserve to be told in worlds that deserve to see the sun that is the hungry eye poring over the pages.

In my head there are a thousand, billion stars and a hundred million thoughts and dozen-dozen stories chomping at the bit to be told.

But they’re all tangled. And right now, right now I’m too young to know what to do with them.

Isn’t that a silly excuse? Age?

But right now, I think that’s the only difference between you and me, sir, ma’am.

Because I’ve been doing this whole world-building thing for as long as I can remember, but as long as I can remember is just barely half or a quarter of what you can remember and I can’t do anything about it.

It’s so hard to know exactly what you want to do with your life but have your mind hold it hostage so that when anyone asks what you’ve done of substance lately, all that you can do is stare because you know that your substance and their substance are completely different things.
I guess that what I’m trying to say is that I get where your advice is coming from, sir, ma’am, but you’re not going to scare me off. I am a first-class knot untangler, and one day I will be able to make sense of this mess of brilliance in my head.

I’m here to stay. And you will see me again.


One thought on “The Novice Writer’s Manifesto

  1. Yes yes yes to all of this. One of the most freeing things I could do for myself was realize (and it took me a while, and it hurt and it sucked all that time) was that I couldn’t let anyone or anything else define my definition of a “writer”. I hate those rules and pieces of advice you find online that act like you have to do this or not do that or else you’re not legitimate. To me, you’re a writer if you’ve got words in your head that just drive you crazy until you get them out one way or another. It’s not about how much you write, or how well, or if you ever get published even once. That’s all relative.

    Anyway. Just had to say I loved this. Definitely following you. 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s