Aging is many things—we stop being active, no longer take risks, start referring to ourselves as “old”—these are just three things that come to mind when I think of people I know who have transitioned from being “young” to being “old.”
I’ve been thinking about my own life, and what motivates me to keep pushing through resistance. Recently getting another book out the door—my fourth title in nine years—doesn’t qualify as prolific, but it’s still a respectable output for a writer that does more than just write to make a living.
When I set out down the road to be a writer in 2002, I knew nothing about what lie ahead. Fortunately, I was aware that in order to compensate for starting later than many (I was 40 at the time), I would have to work my ass off at learning the craft of writing. For me that’s always been about writing as much as I could carve out time for, in a nod to Stephen King’s advice in On Writing, I’ve written almost every day for the past 12 years.
“Have you written your own success letter?”
Last fall I taught a class called Let’s Write That Book: 8 Weeks to Writing and Publishing Your First Book for Lewiston Adult Education. It was my favorite class of all of the ones I’ve taught in the four years I’ve been teaching writing to adult learners.
I didn’t really believe you could write a book in mere weeks, but I wanted a class that was different than the previous narrative nonfiction classes I’d taught—one with a provocative orientation. It obviously worked because we filled the class and ended up with a waiting list.
The class was beneficial for me, as it lit a fire under my own ass and got me motivated to get a fourth book rolling forward. It was also the best group of writers I’d gathered for any of my various classes. Continue reading
Words matter. They have the power to heal, convey love, hate, complexity, as well as whimsy. Some people are obsessed with words and how to arrange and order them—we’re called writers.
A decade ago, I gave myself permission to call myself a writer. This wasn’t an arbitrary decision. I based it upon things I was figuring out about myself at the time. Looking back, I made the right choice. Continue reading