If writing was a choice I wouldn’t have obsessed about it since I was eight years old. I just didn’t believe I could be a writer, at least not after the person that was supposed to believe in me acted like it was something that was too hard, took too long and I just wasn’t cut out for it. Thankfully I don’t believe that anymore.
The giveaway today is the new book by Natalie Goldberg, The True Secret of Writing: Connecting life with language. I greatly admire Natalie Goldberg and how she had the courage to teach writing classes before she was a published writer; how she sold a page of prose at fairs for a dollar to anyone that wanted it before she was published. She just kept writing until she sold her first book and became an author. She kept doing what she loved no matter what.
Many people say that when they retire, or when I make enough money, or (insert excuse here) I will be a writer. You don’t hear writer’s saying they want to be something or someone else. They write because they don’t have a choice but to write. If they don’t write they are thinking about writing. If they don’t write they have an ache, an emptiness inside of them that just can’t be filled by anything else no matter what they do.
Here is what I wrote in my journal about this question:
If writing was a choice…
I wouldn’t lose large blocks of time while I was writing.
I wouldn’t forget to eat because I was so into my flowing words everything else melts away.
I wouldn’t have so many pens.
I wouldn’t have bought all the books on writing and books for research as I have over the years.
My head wouldn’t be filled with all of these words that insist on pouring out of me and onto the page.
If writing was a choice, I wouldn’t be me.
I learned about the essence of writing from Natalie Goldberg’s books. They nurtured me in a way that my family never could. Meet Natalie talking about writing and the place she fell in love with the moment she saw it.
I also speak about Natalie Goldberg and writing on the MuseCraft website here.
So tell me, if writing was a choice… what would you or wouldn’t you be doing? Write your answers in the comments below and enter to win Natalie’s latest book.
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Come back tomorrow to see what Patricia has in store for you!