On Starting: Get the Writing Done

I’ll start with the plainest fact about writing possible.

It’ll never get written if you don’t write it.

There. Simple and clean and fact. If you don’t write it, no one will. No one else can write the short story or poems or novels that are in your head but you. God won’t reach down and write it for you. You can’t wave a magic wand and the short story or poem or screenplay or novel will appear in complete form on your desktop.

Fingers to the keyboard. Pen to paper. And start.  

It begins with YOU

Sound difficult? Then write I don’t know what to write. Write I can’t think of anything. This is stupid. It’s raining outside. Why did I decide to this? That’s right. WHY DID I DECIDE TO DO THIS?

Now you answer yourself. Why did you decide to write that novel? The short story? The poem. Your memoir. A screenplay you’re sure will sweep up at the Academy Awards. For fame? To leave a legacy? A written history of your past for your future children and grandchildren to read? To speak to greater truths in the world that only you see? Why are you writing?

Remembering your why will lead into action.

Why do you call yourself a writer? Do you write? If you’re a writer, that means you write words. Writers don’t write in their head. Writers don’t write in fantasy or in dreams. Physical words. Write it down.

Remembering your why will lead into action

—A. E. Costello

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What I’ll say next is harsh, and if it hurts, then maybe its because you really need to hear it.

Stop pretending you’re a writer if you don’t write.

Do you write?

If you don’t write, then you’re not a writer. If you journal, yes, you’re a writer. If you write in five minute snatches during work, then yes, you’re a writer. If you write thirty minutes a day at four a.m. before the rest of the house wakes up, then yes, you’re a writer. But if you don’t write anything besides daydreaming about writing in your head, then You. Are. NOT. A. Writer.

So how do you write? How do you get whatever story that is in your head out of your head and into the physical world?

In the end, the only way it gets done is three simple steps:

  1. Sit down.
  2. Pen in hand, keys on keyboard, lips to recorder. (unless you can telepathically send words from your mind to physical form)
  3. Start.

If you can’t manage steps one or two, then maybe you should look into another profession. If you can get to step three, then start. The excuses will kill your dreams. There’s no one who has your brain and your thoughts who will write it for you. There’s no muse who will swoop down and enlighten you and make you write.

Excuses will kill your dreams

— A. E. Costello

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The same goes for me right now, and the Zippy Mae series I’ve begun.

I’m telling all of this to me. I’m telling this to me. Zippy Mae and the Seven Kingdoms is not writing itself. I’m not sitting at my desk with rainbows and sparkles flowing out of my fingers. I’m sitting cross-legged on my bed with my computer in my lap bleeding out trying to get the writing down.

The writing is getting done and that’s the point. GET IT DONE.

Start, A. E. And whoever’s reading this with words bottled up inside of you, just start. If you don’t start, it’ll never get written. Whatever is in your head will remain in your head. No one can read that bestselling novel that’s only in your head. There’s no movie deal for a novel that only exists in your fantasy world. There is only you (me) and nothing and no one else. No one can do it but you.

So what are you waiting for?

Start.

And as always, while I write Aomine keeps me company by my side.

Do you think she wants attention?

4 Comments Add yours

  1. kat says:

    How I wish I could telepathically write all of my novels! But you’re so right. Unless you just sit and actual start writing, nothing’s going to happen. I’ve been guilty of this far too often, but then, when I do start writing, it feels so good. I’m really looking forward to your Zippy Mae books. I have two young kids and desperately want them to be exposed to diversity in every possible area, while also getting to read something fun. Also, I love your cat! She’s adorable!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Exactly. For me I stall for sooo long but once I’m writing I wonder why it took me so long to start. I’m so happy to hear you’re interested in Zippy Mae! I’ll be posting updates about it so stay tuned. And yes Aomine is extremely photogenic, so I can’t stop from taking pictures of her. And since the majority of them are her lounging by my computer, I figured I’d upload them with a few of my posts. Thanks for reading!

      Liked by 3 people

  2. Tira says:

    This is just the push I needed. Thank you. I wanted to let you know that your advice is very much appreciated.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re very welcome. It’s the same encouragement or lecture that I give myself just about everyday. Get the writing done or it’ll never get done, bottom line. Thank you for reading!

      Liked by 1 person

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