That’s right. I said it.
You have failed.
Ok, so not all of you… But some of you (chances are, you know who you are) are failing as writers. I’ve had several people ask me How do you know the difference between a good writer and a bad one? These seven things are the best way to identify a failed (or failing) writer… and spotting and admitting to these shortcomings are the trust steps to fixing your problem and getting you writing again.
1: You don’t write enough
Maybe it's once or twice a week, for a few minutes tops. "I’m just too busy." You say… Then end up binge watching Netflix and playing around on social media for however many hours. We’re all guilty of this one; but if you are really serious about writing, you will see this as the flaw it is. And you will do something about it!
2: You’re not you
You let other’s words dictate your style. You try to force yourself and your writing into these little corners; certain genres, settings, characters, etc. You don’t allow yourself to be yourself. Expanding is ok; natural. Fantastic, even! Freedom is they key to success. Writing in such a tense and restrictive manner is destroying you.
3: You’ve let the criticism stop you
Rejection hurts. It’s perfectly normal to need a break from writing after disappointing feedback; that’s not wrong at all. You can feel that bitter sting and end up wallowing in self pity, thinking "Woe is me! I’m just going to give up." OR you can take the rejection as the challenge it is, get up, and ask yourself "How can I prove this person wrong?" Then you DO IT.
4: You’ve found other "priorities"
Life happens. Sometimes, writing has to sit on the back burner for a little while. Nothing wrong with that. Unless you put things of lesser importance in front of writing. This is procrastination. Stop it. Right now. You know what you're doing. If you are so bold as to call yourself a writer, then you must be strong enough to earn the title. Write.
5: You don’t finish what you start
You lose steam on some stories more quickly, others slower, but you always lose it at some time or another. You aren’t committed. Check out my post on commitment HERE. and learn how to train yourself to commit. It's not impossible. Just sit back and trust the process. It works; I promise.
6: You don’t read
A writer is a reader that is moved to imitation. Read to write, not the other way around. Words are your power, your magic potion, your sword, your elixir. If you aren’t frequently building up your arsenal, you can’t be upset when things get dirty and you don’t have enough to get yourself through!
7: You wait for inspiration
Inspiration is elusive by nature. The only way you can get anywhere is to go after it. To tackle it and force it into submission. Check out my post about this HERE. Don’t be a waiter; you’re a writer.
If you see yourself in any one of these, you have a choice before you. Stop the procrastination, the lies, the hurt, and the denial. Move through your life with purpose. Whatever is keeping you from being the writer you were meant to be has got to go. Not tomorrow, not next week, not next month, not next year. TODAY. You know it, I know it.
Just do it.
There's nothing to lose.
Nothing to regret.
Nothing to stop you.
Only a healthy, happy writing life worth having.
Stop failing. Start writing!