Keeping Your Creativity Flowing


Amazon author, Heather Sylvawood

Sometimes I find myself wallowing in my lack of raving success. The feelings that tell me I’m wallowing include:

  • Fear my writing isn’t (I’m not) good enough
  • Despondency when my incoming email doesn’t bring notification of another subscriber to my list
  • Frustration when the process of editing takes so long
  • Resentment that other needs (not my own) intrude onto my time
  • Despair that I can be so easily distracted from my writing by activities that are supposed to increase my visibility but don’t seem to bring astounding results (like blogging, ha ha!)

The Writing Success Road

Then I remember that many other writers don’t ‘make it’ in the first few years of their writing career. The fact that I’m starting NOW and they started years before doesn’t register. They are NOW reaping the benefit of years of similar struggle until their breakthrough moment when a book took off.

Author Experiences Before Success

Here are few author’s experiences:

  1. Donald Ray Pollock published his The Devil All the Time debut novel in 2011, but not everyone knows he was 55 before he completed his collection of short stories and three years later his novel.
  2. Laura Ingalls Wilder, author of Little House on the Prairie started writing aged 44, but it was 20 years later that she achieved her success.
  3. Helen DeWitt confessed that she spent seven years working on various novels, trying to combine writing with various jobs. “In 1995 I decided this must stop. I had 100 novels in fragments …” The Last Samurai is what resulted.
  4. Joanna Penn, prolific writer of thrillers based around religious themes, was a business IT consultant for 13 years before she published her first book (non-fiction) and started her career as a novelist.
  5. Toni Morrison, whom I featured on WriteGear’s FaceBook page, was 35 when she joined a writers group. The result five years later was her first novel The Bluest Eye.

Tips for Finding Your Writing Motivation

I found this interesting blog: 6 Tips for Finding the Courage to Write, by author Laurie Pawlik-Kienlen.  The tips are from a book Laurie reviewed, written by Lionel Shriver.

These are the six tips, but please click the link above to access her blog, written five years ago, but still as relevant today.

  1. Accept that you’ll need to fire up your courage every day, every hour
  2. Prepare yourself for a long writing journey…and try to enjoy it!
  3. Expect writing rejections – even from your own literary agent
  4. If you can’t go through it, get around it
  5. Do not give up on your book or writing career
  6. Learn to cope with fear, anxiety, doubt, self-criticism

I would like to add one more.:

7. Go back to the reason you wanted to write in the first place – feel the urgency and return to today’s writing with that same sense of MUST WRITE.