“Oh my God! you are such a great writer. What is your secret?”
If you are a lover of words strung into beautiful sentences and, ultimately, compelling stories, you must have made that statement and asked that question before. We all love secrets, they give us a sense of mystery, importance and deification.
I always wanted to know the secret to becoming a great writer. I searched and searched and searched till I found it, and boy, it is the greatest secret ever. Trust me, if you apply this secret, you will see your writing improve so much so that you will surprise yourself with the kinds of work you’ll churn out.
The secret to becoming a great writer is UNDERSTANDING THAT THERE IS NO SECRET!!!!
Hold on a minute, I know you are disappointed. I know you wanted to hear a very catchy or cliche phrase. Nada. That is all there is! The secret you have been looking for is UNDERSTANDING THAT THERE IS NO SECRET at all.
MYTH: It takes great talent and intelligence to write a good book or piece.
TRUTH: It takes PERSISTENCE!
FACT: Many people who are less talented than you, or who are less proficient with written word have published books or written materials that are winning hearts and doing fine.
So there you have it. Your greatest asset is your presence, your persistence and your pen. Start writing. It might not make sense, and you may not feel like your work is good enough (I feel that way many times, but people read my
scrappy works and claim to be blown away by them), but write all the same. Just write, and keep writing and keep writing.
Of course, it helps to learn the systems that guide a good writing, but you don’t need to wait till you enroll at University of IOWA before you put your words out. Your writing is like your voice. Babies begin to use their voice even before they learn how to say their ABCs.
Then, if you are like me, you always, always have ideas for stories and you never start them- and when you eventually start them, you abandon them halfway and run off to another one. I am repenting from that sin, please join me in repenting. The gods of writing are angry!
Finally, allow me to leave you with SETH GODIN’s goldin(read golden) words:
SHOW UP, SIT DOWN AND (WRITE).
Because you give a lot of excuses for not writing, allow me to tweak it to:
SHOW UP, SHUT UP!, SIT DOWN AND WRITE!