On Being A Writer

The first time I learned how to string words together, I knew I wanted to be a writer.  I can still see it in my mind, half sheet of wide ruled paper, second grader scrawl filling up the lines.  It was no more than a few sentences, telling the illustrious tale of a unicorn and a girl.  It wasn't much, but it was enough.  It was a beginning.  

In the years that followed, I focused on writing and reading.  I considered it research, devouring book after book, hungry for more.  Looking back, a lot of those books were beyond my comprehension, beyond what I should have been reading. Les Miserables in sixth grade, every book Stephen King wrote by the end of seventh.  It was around that time that I went from writing short stories and diary entries.  It was around that time, that I started my novel.  

I finished it, too.  It was 251 one pages scrawled lovingly in my Hedwig notebook.  It was my pride and joy, a story of adventure, love, and discovery.  I started on the sequel, which after getting three hundred pages in, decided I hated, and started over.  I started to realize a lot of what I was doing wasn't working, seeing the rips and tears in a what I thought was a perfect story.  I became hypercritical of my stories, and started looking in a different direction.

It didn't help that these were my angsty teen years.  I spent an obscene amount of time scrawling bad poetry and song lyrics.  I fancied myself a musician, and decided to pursue that in college.  

I should have known better.  My dad told me repeatedly that I needed to write, that I needed to major in English.  It makes me laugh now.  What parent encourages an English major?  My parents could clearly see my strengths better than I, and I spent two and a half years hating my major and struggling to write sonatas and analyze Bach before I took a creative writing class.

It was like being alive again.  It felt the same way it feels every time I see the ocean, or when I met my son, or when I dream.  It was like meeting myself again, after being lost for so long.  For me, writing is the beating of my heart.  I find comfort in it the way some people find comfort in a lover, in a song.  Writing is my spiritual director.  I find myself closer to God with each word I write.

But writing is hard.  It's vulnerability.  I find myself naked, bare.  I fluctuate between extreme confidence and self-consciousness.  In the dead of night I feel like a failure, like a person playing pipe dreams with no grasp on reality.  I feel like a waste of words, "your" where there should be "you're."  

It's only through God that I find my strength.  I know that He has given me a gift.  I know that He nudges me, pushes me, whispers in my ear.  I know I'm doing the right thing.  It might not be perfect, but it is my path.  I write for God, I write for myself, and I write for you, dear reader.  I write so that you might know the breathings of my heart, as Wordsworth would say.  I write so that you might find, somewhere embedded between my imperfections and typos, a slice of truth, something to touch you, something to change your life and make it better.  I hope, in some small way, I make you better.


God Bless you.

16 comments:

  1. This is encouraging...keep writing of course!

    -Rachel from Creatively Redeeming Her

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    1. I definitely will :) Thank you for commenting Rachel!

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  2. "But writing is hard. It's vulnerability."

    Yes, it is. I find myself writing about "safe" things because of this. I came over from Barn Hop. I enjoyed your post.

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    1. I've been really trying to push myself, thus steering away from informational posts and recipes and delving deeper into myself. It's terrifying, but ultimately much more fulfilling.

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  3. Stoping by from the Wellspring. I identify with the wanting to write but not wanting to be vulnerable. But if we want to impact others vulnerability seems to be what always connects us. So I'm right there with you. :)

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  4. Writing is hard. What I find most hard is to write when I am not inspired. When I feel blah. To create something entertaining to read when I'm not emotionally engaged is tough -- but that's what a writer has to do. Love reading your words.

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  5. That too is why I write! Blessings to you!

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  6. That too is why I write...Blessings to you!

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  7. Hi Megan,

    Wow, I feel like we've walked in each other's footsteps all this time... I can say I've experienced the same emotions, for certain!

    Recently I've returned to creative writing, as well... and it feels like coming home.

    Welcome home, Megan!
    sue

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  8. Amen and Amen and Beautiful post! Me too but you said it so much better than I could have! Fluctuating between extreme confidence and self-confidence...so true. It is the curse of the writer! Blessings to you!

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  9. Welcome to the writerly blog hop, Megan! Glad you joined us. I love seeing what makes other writers tick and how they discovered their passion for writing. Keep on writing, keep on listening to God's whispers.

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  10. I love this: "I write so that you might find, somewhere embedded between my imperfections and typos, a slice of truth, something to touch you, something to change your life and make it better. I hope, in some small way, I make you better." Thank you for sharing your talent on your blog!

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  11. I found your blog through Julie at From Inmates to Playdates. This post could describe me as well. I can't wait to read more of your blog.

    Personal blog: www.italianbelladiaries.blogspot.com
    Writing blog: www.crystijane.blogspot.com

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  12. Writing IS hard work, but oh, such the sweet place if this is who you are. I"m glad you are blogging it out now :)

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  13. I'm so thankful you writing. And I do see the breathings of your heart tucked among your words. I was a young adult before I realized the writing dream of my childhood could become a reality. It's up to us to expand on the gifts God gives us. And you're doing a great joy of it!

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  14. I’ve struggled with the same hypercriticism. So much so that I couldn’t even get a sentence out. I just kept editing it to death. …I’m still working on this!

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