So how does anybody start writing an article about writing? Or about anything at all? If you ask me then the answer is fairly simple – by start writing.
Make any sense? Let me explain with an example. An interview done by BBC with Gary Lightbody, the lead singer of Snow Patrol will give you a better idea of what I am going on about.
For someone with a continuous drive to create music, Lightbody was shocked to find himself suffering a crippling bout of writer’s block last year.
“Oh God, I never want to go through that again,” he grimaces. “You’ve done the thing that you do every day of your life for 16 years and suddenly it’s removed from you.
“I just couldn’t write a single word. I was terrified. I couldn’t pick up my laptop, my notepad, or anything, for fear that I was going to sit there and stagnate.
“I was actually catatonic for most of it.”
There was no real breakthrough, he says, just the support of his friends and bandmates.
“The best advice I got, and this sounds ridiculous, was ‘writers write’.
“Avoiding writing is the worst possible thing to do – but that’s what I was doing. I was too frightened to even pick a pen up. So writers write: Even though it sounds so prosaic, it’s absolutely true. You do it until it works, and that’s what I did.”
A person becomes a writer only when he thinks of himself/herself as one. No, I am not asking you to fool yourself into being a writer but to give yourself a reason, an inspiration, a chance into becoming one. You wear your heart on your sleeve, wander around thinking, feeling and leading a life as a writer. With that, you now begin to draw on your personal experiences and from that of others. You learn to set your imagination free and begin to listen to your instincts more. Ideas start brewing, plots become clearer, words begin flowing and slowly but surely, a piece of your written work will be done with.
If you are one with opinions to share, ideas to discuss, stories to tell and can string a sentence together (how good you are at it is a different narrative altogether), all you need to do is put pen to paper and start writing your mind away.
Most of us writers judge ourselves far more aggressively than our readers do. We are a cynical lot. It is an occupational hazard of sorts. Although self-scrutiny is good, too much of it curbs our enthusiasm to write and hinders our creativity.
As writers, our quest should solely be to keep writing and thus remain a writer. Let posterity decide how good we are.