Before she wrote her memoir Wild, Cheryl Strayed penned an advice column under the pseudonym “Sugar.” In answer to a letter from a self-described “writer who can’t write,” Cheryl replied, “Writing is hard for every last one of us… Coal mining is harder. Do you think miners stand around all day talking about how hard it is to mine for coal? They do not. They simply dig.”
We sometimes associate activities being hard with them being unpleasant. But the two don’t go hand-in-hand. Mountain climbing is hard, but climbers don’t do it because someone is forcing them up the slope. Raising a child is hard, but many parents say it’s the most rewarding part of their lives. Learning a foreign language is hard, yet many of us decide to study a new tongue by choice.
Stretching our abilities, growing as a person, learning new skills – all of these undertakings can be hard. But they can also be enriching, fulfilling, and downright enjoyable. We often take on difficult endeavors like these not just willingly, but eagerly. We seek them out and look forward to them. We make them an important part of our lives.
Yes, there are times that writing is hard. There are also times when it makes you feel like you’re on top of the world, doing what you were meant to do. It’s possible for the feeling that writing is hard and the feeling that writing is fantastic to co-exist in you at the exact same time.
The next time you notice that writing feels hard, channel your inner mountain climber, parent, language student, or whatever metaphor works for you. View your writing as a challenge to surmount, or a richly fulfilling path, or a set of skills to master.
And if that seems hard, so what?
For me, the metaphor is running. Running is tedious, with moments of high. When I stop doing it for a while, getting back to it is hard. Life is better when I do it.
That’s a perfect metaphor, Barbara. I find that if I write at least once per week for 2-3 hours, it’s easy to write again the next week. But if I go a week without writing, it’s much harder to get back to it.
CJ. Hi. I’m Jodi. Graduate from IIN. 2012. I surely know who you are and have read Get Clients Now. I’m not sure if this is a good question to ask you .
Do you have a hand book. Or an outline that you can recommend to give me some order in my brain as I am considering writing a book.
I looked on Amazon to see if you had published your own how to …. Didn’t see it.
My website is a bit of a mess. My webmaster and I just stopped working on it. It was great and then I needed to change it. And now that it’s a mess I have not written current content. That is my bad .
Hi Jodi, I’m glad to hear you’ve read Get Clients Now! I have not published a guide to organizing your content for writing a book. My colleague Joanna Penn has a book on writing non-fiction that may give you what you’re looking for: https://amzn.to/3JAvM3W