When you’re new to the literary game, it can be rather easy to fall into some (or all) of these traps. For your own sake, please don’t. Things can change. You can achieve your literary ambitions—but that won’t be likely to happen if you’re afflicted by the following:
1. A Lack of Confidence – You may not have had your work published in any literary journals. You may have had to self-publish that first book. You may not have even completed that first book. So what. Where you are today is not where you have to be tomorrow.
2. A Lack of Writing – You may talk a lot about being a writer, but how much are you actually writing? Aspiring writers turn into emerging writers through writing a great deal. Your work may be rough at first, but like anything else, with practice you’ll grow into a better writer.
3. A Lack of Control – You can’t write because your life has gone awry. If so, you need to take steps to fix your life before anything else. Once your life has some semblance of order, you can turn your literary dreams into your reality.
4. A Lack of Technique – Unfortunately, many aspiring writers don’t read much. You can’t write if you’re not a reader. Reading teaches technique. While blogs like this one, helpful books, and creative writing courses can teach a great deal, it’s an uphill battle if you don’t love to read. Truthfully, reading teaches technique better than any of the aforementioned resources.
5. Treating Writing As a Chore – The world won’t end if your book isn’t completed. Your world won’t end if your book isn’t completed. Writing should be a lot of fun. Writing shouldn’t feel like work. If you treat writing like work, it’s going to start to feel like a job. Writing should never feel like a job. Please don’t put that much pressure on yourself!
Have you made any of these mistakes? How have you overcome them? I’d love to hear your story of how you overcame these challenges.