I love to see or hear of my students jubilant to be publishing their first story. I don’t blame them for jumping up and down: for a writer, the sincerest complement is a check that clears the bank.
One lady had stopped writing for years, just stuck and couldn’t get started again. Didn’t know where to begin and dealing with doubt and guilt. When she signed up for the LIFEWRITING PREMIUM program, the very first thing that hit her was that all I wanted was a single small action every day: One Sentence. That’s it. I said that you could write a book a year with a sentence every day.
Crazy, right? No, it isn’t, because to write that sentence you have to find internal permission to succeed, even at that small level, and she found that once she actually made the time, sat down, booted up her word processing program, got into state…once she went to bed at night thinking “I wonder what sentence I’ll write tomorrow?” and woke up with an image of a scene in mind, and all she had to do was describe that little bit of story…
That she wouldn’t stop at a single sentence. She would often write a page, or more. That took her to the “1-4 stories a month” part. Then, watching the videos T and I taped at the LASFS clubhouse a couple of years back, she began to feed the part of her brain that learns. That’s all you have to do: take action, constantly refine your map, check to see where you are, and input good writing. Repeat and repeat and repeat.
Once she was doing this, AND THEN SUBMITTING the stories she finished, she was doomed to succeed. There is almost no way to fail once you start this process. Its like if you walk West long enough, eventually your feet are gonna get wet.
And about five stories in, she got published. And she turned back-flips AND SO SHE SHOULD because she had accomplished something wonderful. She had become one of the few who love themselves enough to actually go after their goals, actually move through the fear, actually let a mentor whisper in her right ear to counteract the demons whispering into her left.
Wonderful. I love people like that. Because I believe that all we need to do to heal and change the world is to live in alignment with BOTH your childhood dreams and your deathbed values, I see her as a sister in a much larger fight: knitting the human race together, proving that lies and fear are not as strong as truth and love. That’s my position. That’s what I’m willing to stand for.
And if that sounds like you…you are a brother or sister too. And boy, does the world need you.
Write with passion, live with purpose…