Because You Love It

I’m me. I’m a writer such as you may be. And because this month is the famous April Camp Nanowrimo experience as announced in our previous post, I am planning to write a book. A novel. 2 pages a day leading up to my goal of completion. But let me tell you a secret…
I’m not going to publish it.
Well to be more accurate, I’m not writing this right now to publish it. I’m not writing it to sell or hand out to all my friends and random strangers I meet, stacks of books by my side everywhere I go. I’m not writing it to sell at conventions and meetings. And while that may sound amazing and I might do that someday in the future, it’s not the motivation for me right now. Because I have different reasons for writing my book, the novel of my dreams, my first one I’m ever going to finish.

Practice Makes Perfect
I’m writing to practice, to see if I can do it. I have never finished a book in my lifetime aside from short children’s ones, but seeing as I recently have become obsessed with writing (because of the YWW) I decided now was the time to do so. Brett Harris always says a quote, “You can’t write your fifth book first.” Because my main goal for my future is to become a published author who writes well-written quality fiction books, I am not going to waste any time of my short teen years to practice writing as much as I can. As Jaquelle Crowe says, you can’t write consistently for years and not get better. That’s my goal - to get better at writing.


I’m writing to have something to rewrite, to edit. To learn the sport of revising and the art of whipping up an old creation into a new shape. Because I have so few writing projects under my belt, I desperately need some practice in these areas. And I’ve heard that rewriting and rewriting and shaving down words into better ones produces quality material.


You can’t edit words that aren’t written. You can’t edit a blank page.


That’s why on this fateful month, what I encourage you to work on is consistency. Because you can’t “not” get better. When I first started the Young Writers Workshop, I was blinded to this fact and depressed that I was a terrible writer. But I have noticed a difference by now, and realized that Just Writing does help! However slight a difference it may be, I take comfort in the fact that when I work hard it pays off. When you write consistently, it may be a small hard thing to do in the moment. Because you don’t feel like it, or don’t want to take the time, or any other excuse I have likewise thought in the past. But when you write consistently, every five minutes or every day or every week, you are doing the right first step to improving in your writing.


I’m partaking on this journey not to publish just yet, but to improve. And in fact, when I do improve, publishing may be in my near future. Don’t think you can’t get published when you are a teenager, because Brett and Alex Harris and Jaquelle Crowe have proven you can. You can. But it takes a lot of hard work. You need to start today and keep going for however long it takes. Then keep going more after that. (you thought it was going to be over someday? Nope. Too bad.)

Write from the Heart
Don’t get me wrong, I do want to get published. I’ve been wanting to write articles to submit to other websites, but something terrible happens when I have this mindset. When I try to write perfectly for other people it doesn’t work as well as when I write for my blog, from the heart. When I don’t care about what other people are going to think about my writing just then, about my rough draft, words start pouring out of my soul and I look down at what I have written in disbelief. When I write for myself, amazing things happen.


I don’t want to write to get published at this moment. Because this slows my writing down, and this month that’s not good. We want to write fast, right? In my opinion it is easier to write fast when you are writing what you want to write, what you want to read, not caring about how much better other people write.


Whatever your passion is, write about it. Even if you don’t feel like it, it will be easier than writing something you don’t care about - I promise. Free refund if it doesn’t work that way for you. But seriously, just write. Start the journey now and don’t look back, when it gets hard don’t give up. It doesn’t matter if your first draft is stupid, because I know mine will be anyways. Write what you love. If you love pirates then research for a few minutes then let your imagination take over your fingers and make them write. Whatever your interest lies. Because this month, for me, is about improving and practicing and loving it along the way.


Don’t start on this journey of the imagination but then stop alongside the road, don’t give up because you don’t think you have the words in you. I think that all the time. And when I sit down to write, my fingers surprise me. Somehow a page gets filled up, and then another, and then another. I look back and get to enjoy what I wrote, whether it was happy or sad or terrible it still makes me smile.


Because I wrote it.


And you can do it too. That blank page you are staring at, hoping that somehow you can write something good, can become something beautiful. Not because it’s perfect writing. But because you wrote it. You can do it.

I encourage you today to write, write in bliss and imagination and pleasure for seconds or minutes or hours. Just write. And you will look down and be surprised at what you did.

This month I’m not writing to get published. I’m sitting back with a cup of tea and my fuzzy panda, frantically writing words, trying to get the word count. Writing to practice. Writing because I love it. And quite frankly, I’m writing the book I want to read.

4 comments:

  1. Wow, this is awesome! Great encouragement, thanks!

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  2. So encouraging Karissa! I've been stumped starting work on a new book, trying to get the first page to come out perfect, but I'm going to try your method of writing for myself and not others...let's hope it works!
    C.g.K.

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