I am the writer who came to the practice late in life. I took the scenic route and by the time I made this decision, writing wasn’t leisurely, I was on a mission. Then, an extraordinary opportunity to attend graduate school presented itself. But it’s some of the fuzzy nuances between the decision to write and to pursue an MFA that I want to address here.
At the time, I didn’t know many writers. This was before listicles, social media, blogs, even recreational or commercial internet. How was I going to make this happen? What did I want it to look like? For several years, I was my own guide on a journey I really didn’t understand.
Several key things pulled me through those years. First, accepting that I had to put so many words on the wordometer before my writing, my voice, my approach on the page would take shape. Second, developing a dynamic practice that adjusted to the other demands in my life and vice versa. Looking back now, I could have done a few simple things to make this happen faster and better, but, ohhh, I’m here now. Third, was applying what Angela Lee Duckworth calls grit
. A path forms organically when quitting is not an option.
Developing this muscle memory through these three channels helped me sort out the fantasy of being a writer versus the reality. But, no kidding, every start is some sort of fantasy, it’s not real and that’s part of its magic. Go with it, embrace that until you can make your own reality.
Image by Denise Krebs via flickr Creative Commons
This is Day 8 of 20 of BlogHer’s NaNoBloPo Challenge for February 2015. This month’s challenge is “Make,” check out all of these posts here.