If You Want to Be A Remarkable Writer, Get A Life
You sit at your desk at 5am, ready to write. Nothing, absolutely nothing comes to your mind. You are totally blank.
I’ve been in this situation many times. I think to myself, “I have to publish something for the 52 week writing challenge this week” but no words come. I have the dreaded writer’s block.
How many times have you been in this situation? One major myth about writers is writers always stay huddled in their rooms with a candle, binging on whatever food they find in the fridge, slaving away at their laptops. God forbid, they leave their rooms to relate with mere mortals.
I think this myth came from some of the novels we read growing up. Writers were always classified as hermits; focused on only publishing their best work while everything else in life suffers as a result.
I have learned if you want to write consistently and make an impact on your audience, you need to get a life. This defeats the myth of staying locked up in your room for hours and days if you are a writer.
Here are three things you would gain if you consciously make an effort today to get a life:
You get a ton of ideas.
Some ideas you get might be good; some might end up in the trash. Not a problem. James Altucher says you should write down 10 ideas every single day. At first, I felt this was completely impossible but it is possible. I do it now and so should you.
Ideas come from the world around us. You could get an idea while playing with your two year old son or while watching a movie with a friend. Nicole Bianchi in her article ‘Why I Keep an Idea Journal’ recommends writing down the ideas you get in an idea journal. I do this also and it has improved my writing significantly.
People love stories; personal stories.
How can you have stories to tell if you are always huddled up in your room? You would definitely dry up over time and become a dried up, boring, monotonous writer. You won’t be able to connect with your audience because you keep saying things from your past life when you actually had a life.
You will have people waiting for you when you are done with writing.
No matter how long you stay locked up in your room, you need to come out sometime. Who will be there for you when you come out? It’s good to be focused and ambitious but after all is said and done, life must go on. You have to eat real food someday.
So get a life. If you’ve been in your room writing now for hours, stand up from your chair and go see what life has to offer outside. The world would be a much better place if you find that amazing balance between writing and living.
At the Writing Cooperative, our mission is to help each other write better. We’ve teamed up with ProWritingAid to do just that.