Being Proud of Your Aspirations
I’ve always loved writing. I’ve been writing since I was about 7 years old. My first story I remember writing was called “The Turkey Who Ran Away The Day Before Thanksgiving.” Since then, I’ve written fan fiction, random half-finished chapter stories, short stories and finally novel-length work. But the thing is, I used to not shout my desire to be a published YA author from the roof tops. I hardly even whispered it.
I think my family always new I wanted to write and be an author. I mean, I read J.K. Rowling’s biography for fun as a kid in elementary school. I wanted to pursue a major in English/Creative Writing in college. But outside my family, I never really talked about my writing.
And I’m not sure why that is. I know I am very calculated and like doing well at anything I put out for the world to see, so maybe that’s part of it. But I think a little part of me was embarrassed. Embarrassed about what? I’m not sure. Maybe it’s because writing is such an artistic thing that it feels so personal that sharing it with other people is a big deal. Maybe it’s because it’s not a profession you can just jump into like you can with other things. All I know is that I had always been hesitant to tell people that my dream job, my ultimate goal was to be a published author.
Slowly I’ve been more vocal about this aspiration, however. Ever since I started doing NaNoWriMo, blogging about writing, and even posting about it on social media, I haven’t been as shy about telling people. And I’m glad I’ve been able to break out of that shell. Because people ask me about my novel and how it’s doing. They ask “when is it going to be published?” even though I’m going through a complete rewrite right now. But that constant reminder that people care about my passion, that they want to know how it’s going – that is serious motivation to keep working.
Nothing is more motivational than people holding you accountable for things you want to achieve. They may not even realize it either. But for things that may not exactly have deadlines, having outside motivation is exactly the thing I need most.
So if you want a buddy to keep you motivated, I would love to keep you motivated. Keeping each other honest about our progress is something that I think the writing community does well. Because there are enough of us out there that don’t see each other as competition, but people who understand what we’re going through and can be a great support system.