Doubt is hard, but a part of life. You doubt yourself and you become insecure. What once seemed clear all of a sudden looks dark and uncertain. I doubt myself almost all the time, it comes in waves, but as I grow older I see the pattern. Unfortunately I still can’t avoid the pitfalls. But is there a way to get up again, fast? Is there a shortcut?
Why do I even want to be a writer? I ask myself that question quite often. There are times when I love it, the words flow onto the paper, I feel peaceful and happy. A minute later reality comes knocking on my door. How can I ever earn a living from writing? And so it begins, the vicious circle of doubt.
When I consider my options I don’t see myself becoming a scriptwriter, a playwright or any sort of serious writer. How can I possibly reach that far? Maybe I can become a content writer or – if I’m lucky – a copywriter.
Unfortunately the good jobs are hard to get. For many writing jobs the salary isn’t even pocket money. It’s like the corporate world doesn’t understand the effort behind good writing. They don’t want to pay for it anyway. Which brings us back to square one.
What are friends for?
A friend energetically explained to me why I’m not a writer.
“It might sound harsh, but you don’t do it all the time!” she said.
And she has said it before. Other friends have told me my writing is boring. Well, thanks! Now I know, so why do I insist?
It’s true, I haven’t written in a while. I have been too busy worrying about money. But if you are passionate about something, shouldn’t you be doing it as often as possible? Even in times of need and sadness? Probably. Or is writing somehow different?
Okay, doubt. I’m a writer, but apparently not a very good one. It would be nice having people believe in me, but if I don’t believe in myself – why should anybody else?
Kick Doubt’s Butt
Sure! You have to write if you want to get any better. Not believing in yourself kills the joy of writing, and ultimately the chance of creating something good. My main reason for writing is communication. I want to reach people, inspire them, and perhaps make them think, or even laugh. I want to connect, not just write for the drawer.
To have friends telling me their truth isn’t worse than the things I tell myself. It helps me see my inner dialogue more clearly. When someone tells me I’m not a writer, that I’m boring, I get sad. Not hurt, but deeply sad. I feel misunderstood. It actually feels like killing my soul if I don’t get to write.
Yes, it’s hard to succeed as a writer. So much information out there, so many writers, and you have to be interesting. I have about 5 faithful readers of this blog. None of my previous blogs have had more. It’s very heartwarming, and I’m grateful to the committed few, but it’s not a good sign.
Writing is hard. You can’t do it all the time. If you’re lucky you get 30 good minutes a day. It’s the perseverance. You have to keep doing it. Wanna kick doubt’s butt? Keep going. If you want to write you are already a writer.