Monday, January 16, 2023

If Only I had Known: An Open Book blog hop post

Welcome to Open Book Blog Hop. You can find us every Monday talking about the writing life. I hope you'll check out all the posts: you'll find the links at the bottom of this post.

What is one thing that you wish you’d known about writing before you started?


It's been quite a journey. Writing has been a part of my life since before I could write. I was always telling stories: out loud to my mother, in drawings, to my toys, in my own head. Once I learned to write, it was my solace, my best form of expression, my way of understanding the world. 

a quote on a golden background with an old fashioned pen in the corner. The quote reads: The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe. Gustave Flaubert.
image source

None of that has changed, but along the way, writing also became a vocation. I wanted readers, an audience, and maybe some recognition and money for my work. 

So, since I can't remember any "before you started," I'll try to tackle this as "before you started trying to do this professionally." 

As I look back on it, I wish I'd understood sooner that I'd have to MAKE time for writing. I let a lot of years slip by in which I wrote very little, or started things I never finished. It's easy, when you're young, to feel like you've got all the time in the world. Like the song says, "I was young and foolish then, I feel old and foolish now." 

For many years, my creative energy went into my teaching, into mothering, into baking--all things that served others. I don't regret that--much good came out of all that work--but I could have had a little balance, maybe. 

It took me a long time to develop a little healthy selfishness and insist on some space in my life for something just my own--my life of words. 

I'm not one to waste too much emotional energy on "what might have been," but I do lament that I didn't focus and finish things a little sooner in my life. 

How about you? In writing or in life in general, what do you wish you'd known? 

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  1. So many of us were trained that it was wrong to be selfish. I love the idea of healthy selfishness.

  2. Making time for writing is such a difficult thing. Stalling/procrastinating is so much easier. Tweeted.

    1. LOL. For sure! That's probably why I did it for so long.

  3. I didn't start writing until both my sons left home - with kids to look after there simply isn't much time.

    1. Very true. I'm not an empty nester yet, but my youngest is nearly a licensed driver, so we're getting there.

  4. I started writing with plenty of time and wrote all the time, but things changed. Now I am struggling to find more time to write with all that life brings.