When it comes to writing, sometimes I feel like that guy looks in the picture above.
Like I am screaming into a void where no one listens or cares, like I am frustrated as hell that I put in so much work and have so little to show for the time and effort I put in.
I keep writing anyway because I have goals.
Goals to make a living writing, whether it be through writing articles here or for other clients, or finally finishing and publishing one of the books that I am constantly tinkering with.
But I also remind myself along the way that no one really cares about my writing — and probably, no one cares about yours, either.
No one is out there waiting for you to publish your next piece.
(Unless you’re Stephen King or someone equally as famous and you’re dying for the next book — that’s a goal to dream on!)
No one is wondering where you are if you disappear from their feeds for a few days or weeks, no one misses your words, no one even realizes you’re gone.
I know, I felt it last month when I went through a bout of depression and not a single one of my writing ‘friends’ reached out to see why I had disappeared from the internet for weeks.
Writing is a lonely venture, and it’s more lonely when you feel like you have no ‘constant readers’ or support.
YOU have to be your biggest fan.
One thing I’ve learned in this writing journey is that you can’t rely on praise or accolades to keep you writing because they probably aren’t going to come for a long time.
It takes years of hard work and promotion to make a name for yourself as a writer, and until that happens, you risk letting that empty void swallow you whole and your words along with you.
You can’t depend on anyone to cheer you on and support you all the way, because as a writer, you know, you face a lot of skepticism that you can succeed at all.
So you have to be your biggest cheerleader.
You have to tell yourself every time you finish something that you’ve done well and will continue to write and get better and better.
You have to tell yourself that even if your writing isn’t getting a lot of fans, it’s still valuable to you and your complete body of work because everything you write is moving you closer to your goals.
There’s actually an upside to this.
Thankfully, there’s an upside to not being a famous or even just moderately popular writer:
You can write whatever you want and no one is going to care, because no one has any expectations for you, yet.
You can experiment with all forms and genres, you can write fiction, poetry, articles, your novel — and you know that you are doing it for you because you want to, not because you have people expecting certain things from you.
You have the freedom to experiment and find your voice and your place in this writer’s world and not be self-conscious or embarrassed if something totally flops or isn’t well received.
Writing is a marathon, not a sprint.
If you’re reading this, it might be because you are feeling like I have been, lately, a little down about your writing and your progress.
We have to remind ourselves that writing is a marathon, not a sprint.
It could take years of consistent work on your writing before you make it, whatever your definition of “making it” is.
For me, it’s to make a living writing without having to have another job, and I am working toward that every day by writing articles here and working on my novels.
Even though no one seems to care, I keep writing.
Even though it feels like it will take ages, I keep writing.
Because I believe that if I keep at it and don’t give up, if I walk and work the marathon instead of obsessing over the sprint, eventually, I will get there.
So keep on writing, no matter how your work is being received.
You’ll never know how far you can go if you don’t keep trying, and remember: