Don't Give Up
Writing is hard.
Sitting at the laptop, your butt numb from being pressed against the hard chair for too long, your fingers cramped, and your eyes bloodshot - writing is probably the most painful thing I have ever put upon myself. Both physically and mentally.
All us aspiring writers are almost the same. We like the same things (preferably Netflix, coffee, books, and sweatpants), and we hate the same things (mostly bras, parties, social gatherings, family reunions, anything with any kind of socializing whatsoever). Most importantly, we LOVE writing. It’s a lust that was probably instilled in us since the youngest ages possible, followed shortly after the new found passion for reading.
Now, it’s not as if all writers are exactly the same.
First of all, no two books are exact replicas of each other. The English alphabet consists of 26 letters (would you believe I actually had to take a minute to count that?), and we are just one mass civilization using those letters in completely different, unique combinations. The words we print on our papers are the words we made for ourselves.
Also, not all writers choose coffee.
Yeah, I know. Hard to believe, isn’t it? However, sadly enough, I am one of those writers who don’t like coffee. I understand that it keeps you awake through the night and helps finish that darn essay for tomorrow, but I just cannot bring myself to like it. It tastes foul to me. I am one of the rare species of author that prefer tea over coffee. And besides, living a nocturnal life for so long has somehow adapted me in a way that I can stay up as long as I like - depending on the fact that I spend the next day sleeping.
And in addition to this, there are more, much more relevant differences between most writers that, at the moment, I simply don’t have the brain energy to think up.
Anyway, going back to my main point, writing is hard.
Not many people understand, but thinking up characters, story lines, dialogues - it is mentally and physically draining. We are making up completely new worlds, with new people, animals, creatures, who have new adventures and new stories to tell. They’re all inside our heads. There are worlds, galaxies, need I say universes inside our tiny brains.
Which is probably why most of the writers you will meet always look like they have just popped out of the Tardis after a century long adventure with the Doctor.
I have met and been friends with so many people who wanted to write so badly, but they never did. There were people who had begun the phase of writing, but stopped not even mid-way through. There were people who had gone as far as publishing, but then got discouraged because of negative reviews.
I don’t pretend to be an expert on writing. I am still a beginner, like most of you. There are many novels, short stories, and ideas all hidden in my laptops and notebooks, that still haven’t gotten their chance to shine.
But I can tell you this.
No matter how new you are to this, no matter how bad you think your work is, no matter how negative your reviews are, your journey is not yet over. It has barely started. Everybody goes through failure. Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling) was rejected by 12 publishers. Carrie (Stephen King) was rejected by 30 publishers.
You might not get a blast of fame from your very first book. If you did, then congratulations! If you didn’t, don’t worry about it. You’ve still got a long way to go. Your job is to keep improving. Sit down at that laptop, or grab a pen and a notepad, and just write. Try to write once a day. Make yourself some self-goals; not unreachable, but not too easy that you become too lazy either.
Write something. Put it out there. Listen to what people have to say about it. Write something new. Repeat the process.
Don’t feel discouraged about yourself. You’re awesome. You might not realize it yet, but there will come a time in your life where it hits you like a ton of bricks. Keep trying. Keep working hard. Be better than you were yesterday. Improve yourself in every way possible.
I am an aspiring writer. I am going through the same phase of insecurity and hesitation as you are. I am working hard to reach my goals, and I know I will accomplish my dreams. I know you will too.
Anytime you feel like no one supports you, just remember, there is a short Maldivian girl somewhere in South Asia who believes in you.
So there. Don’t give up, fellow writer. You can do this.