Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

How to Conquer a Writer in 4 Easy Steps

  1. Take a lover of words, a passionate wordsmith, and silence her voice. Do not let her speak her mind or share her heart’s treasures, be it aloud or on the page.


  1. Dismantle her hope. Fill her head with dreams of grandeur and when she firmly believes she has a shot at being something, dash it all to the ground like a butterfly crashing into a window.


  1. Discourage her efforts like madmen torturing prisoners of war. Sound the alarm for professions that appeal to her, then watch gleefully as she succumbs to the mournful kisses of rejection and depression when you only let her go but so far with the experience she’s gathered over the years.


  1. Watch her scramble to reinvent herself like a coiled spring shooting forward only to fall in on itself again. And again, she rises, blissfully unaware of the stings of rejection, overqualification, anxiety, and depression for they have become her stepping stones. Observe in awe and silence as she bites herself, draining all the self-doubt from her body to find her voice—and herself—once again.
Posted in Stuff No One Talks About

The Patient Game of Writing

The game of writing is a patient one. One that requires stops and turns, breaks and many, many deletions as your characters take over in fiction or as you mull over syntax and wonder if “stop” or “thwart” would be a better descriptive choice to best convey your meaning in creative nonfiction.

As far as first drafts go, the feeling of being overwhelmed by it all is a daunting, common one. I’m almost done re-reading The Book Thief by Markus Zusak and page 527 is where I find relief and room to breathe again. Of his protagonist and her writing process, he writes, “There was so much to consider, so many things in danger of being left out. Just be patient, she told herself, and with the mounting pages, the strength of her writing fist grew.”

Zusak’s words concerning Liesel’s writing process serves as both a comfort and reminder that while writing can, and often does, take a long time to come to fruition, it’s okay that it’s time (and soul) consuming. Whatever your writing process is, if you can churn out 15 pages in a day or just five paragraphs, it’s okay. So long as writing gets done and you are growing in your craft, that’s all that matters.