The life of a writer is a long and lonely path fraught with amazing highs and debilitating lows. You have to be more than a little crazy to continue the journey, and if you can channel that craziness into passion, you’ll succeed. Keep in mind that your success is not measured by your status in the world of publishing and/or how much money you make at writing. If you’re writing, you are a writer.
The great part about writing is that every now and then you’ll make a connection with someone who thinks and feels exactly the way you do about the writing life. When that happens, you’ll experience a surge of encouragement that keeps you going despite your belief that writers play it close to the vest, no one wants to read what you’ve written, you’ll never be published, or whatever the voices of doubt are whispering in your ear.
It would be so easy to hoard the energy you feel when you strike gold and make that all important connection that leads to a writing relationship. A better thing to do is be the inspiration someone else needs by providing the shoulders for them to stand on even if that means you’re giving back to the person who just encouraged you.
Such was my experience recently with a fellow writer turned great friend. We met to discuss her upcoming interview on another fellow writer’s blog, but the discussion turned personal as we shared our beliefs, experiences, fears, and desires for our writing lives. It was incredible, but the writing high didn’t stop there.
I’d forgotten that my husband had attached a love note proclaiming his support for my writing to the cover of my laptop, and I inadvertently shared his sweet message with all of Starbucks. A young man who had noticed the sign approached me to inquire about my writing. We had a lovely conversation during which he shared his aspirations for writing. I responded with the positive statements I’d received when I began my journey. By the time we shook hands and wished each other a Merry Christmas, I was jittery with excitement.
It would be wonderful if every day in the life of a writer could be like this especially since staying positive is quite a challenge. My personal goal is to continue seeking such instances as well as providing them. More and more I’m encountering this sentiment across social media, so I know I’m on the right track. Giving back, paying it forward, or whatever you choose to call it will never be wasted when the investment in is another person.
Most excellent post Heather! I am mentoring several teens who want to be writers. It is so rewarding to see their growth as writers and people. Keep on doing what you are doing. There are a lot of writers who need help.
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Thanks, Mark. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I’m also glad to hear that you’re mentoring the next generation of writers. You’re contribution is invaluable!