The Only Way to Become a Writer

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Write every day.

Publish every day.

Then reward yourself in some way.

(The third step is as important as the first two.)

Use makes the organ.

You learn to do by doing.

Ergo, you learn to write by writing.

John Grisham’s advice to other writers:

“If you’re not writing at least a page a day, you’re not serious about writing.

It may take you 15 minutes a day or it may take you an hour. When you start doing that page a day, it becomes a habit, and before long, you got a lot of pages piled up.

That’s how I became a writer. I did it in my spare time; I created spare time to do it.”

Writer’s Block is a myth.

How about plumbers? Ever heard of plumber’s block?

Or lawyer’s block?

So why is writer’s block a worldwide phenomenon?

Sean D’Souza of Psychotactics [www.psychotactics.com] says even if you hit this wall called writer’s block, you can move a little ahead if you keep writing every day.

The moment you stop, you get stuck.

Wanting to take a break from writing is just an excuse, especially for newbie writers.

You create the block when you stop writing.

The longer the break; the bigger the block.

The only way to break writer’s block is to write every day – early in the morning, late at night, during your lunch break – whenever you can.

You have to create the time and space to write every day. No one else is going to do it for you.

Stop thinking. Start acting.

Instead of thinking, planning, resolving, procrastinating; write.

Instead of reading about how to write; write.

Instead of buying yet another book; write.

Instead of investing in yet another course; write.

Write first.

Write fast.

Revise lightly.

Then release it to the world.

Submit it. Publish it.

Let go of the results.

The universe may choose to read your words with disdain or awe.

Or the universe may choose to ignore your words.

It truly does not matter.

In the words of Wayne Dyer, detachment is the only vehicle that can take you from striving to arriving.

Liberate yourself from the need for attention, much less approval or praise.

Focus on the work of writing.

Write every day without expectation.

Then, let the time ripen.

The results will come.

Reward yourself.

You need not wait for approval from others.

Instead, reward yourself after every story.

Then write another story and release that one too before the universe can catch its breath.

There is no way to writing; writing is the way.

This is the way of the warrior-writer – unaffected by fear or self-doubt.

This is the way of the monk-writer – unshaken by praise or blame.

This is the way of the alchemist-writer – transforming thoughts into published words.

Soon writing will become as effortless as your beating heart.

Soon writing will become as natural as breathing.

Soon writing will become its own greatest reward.

Write daily; publish daily; reward daily; repeat daily.

(10 July 2013)


Rohi Shetty is a medical doctor, Vipassana meditator, writer, editor, translator and blogger. His short stories and articles have been published online and in print.

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