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Flushing the Myths Down the Drain
by Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ
Like the legend of Camelot and King Arthur, the writing life is not without its share of myths. What are these myths that make non-writers look at writers as if they are of different species? Or what myths about writing keep those from wanting to write get into writing?
Here are the seven most common myths about being a writer and the writing life:
Copyright © 2001 Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ
- To be a writer, you have to give up everything
Says who? Why would you have to give up anything at all just so you can write? Writing is like any other activity you do, except in this case, you love doing it. It doesn't mean you should stop doing other things because of writing. Don't make writing into something you have to do in exchange for giving up or sacrificing another. That's not what writing is all about.
- To be a writer, you have to suffer first
Sure. No pain, no gain, right? Wrong! You don't have to go through some harrowing experience in order for you to write. Sure, lots of writers base their stories on their experiences, but going through a lot of sufferings is not an absolute requirement before you can write or call yourself a writer!
- To be a writer, you have to make writing your number one priority
This shouldn't be the case. Writing shouldn't take you away from life -- from the center of it -- rather, writing should bring you more into it. Treat writing as your choice of "weapon." Make writing your companion; that one thing that helps you through all that happens in your life.
- To be a writer, you have to be published first
Many people think that "legitimate" writers are those who have been already published. This is simply not true. Think of getting published as icing on the cake. The real meaning in being a writer is in the act of writing, whether or not your work gets published.
- To be a writer, you either have to deep, an intellectual, or a dreamer
Well, you need to have a deeper understanding of your surroundings, but you don't have to have Einstein's brains, or the imagination of Shakespeare. Writing is communicating, of being understood, of conveying your words -- how you view the world -- to your readers and having your views and their views meet somewhere in your work.
- To be a writer, you have to get rejections first and endure years of "starvation"
You've heard lots of stories already from writers who had to starve first before they achieved success. While many writers do starve, this is by no means the general condition that occurs among writers. You DON'T have to starve.
- Writing is not a real job
Another misconception. Writing is a job. When you start earning money from your writing on a regular or steady basis, then what you're doing is a job. The fun part of it is that you're doing a job that you love and earning money while you do it!
Shery Ma Belle Arrieta-Russ is the creator of WriteSparks!™, the idea and story generator for writers. Download your free copy today by going to this link.
Kick start your imagination, ignite your creativity, and begin your journey towards becoming an outstanding writer.
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