You can write – if you want to write.
You can teach – if you want to teach.
You can cook – if you want to cook.
You can . . . I could go on, but I’ll let you fill in your blanks.
The point is not the destination, but the determination that will drive you to that place.
You can – if you will.
It’s no more complicated than that.
The other day, an article came through my feed, and I dismissed it – in part because I was determined to avoid all squirrels. It returned to my feed this morning, and I clicked through to see if there was a point that went deeper than the annoying headline about NOT writing your book.
The premise of the article focused on how not everyone should write a book. The author used the example of a marathon – and how just because you can run doesn’t mean you can run a marathon.
I disagree with the premise.
It’s not that you can’t run the marathon, it’s that you haven’t put in the time or the effort to get ready to run the marathon because you don’t want to run the marathon.
You do have a story in you and your story has meaning and value. The focus is not on should you write a book or not, but do you want to write a book?
Not everyone wants to write a book.
Not everyone wants to teach.
Not everyone wants to run a marathon.
Many years ago, I coached a local swim team. We had several swimmers that were already skilled enough to move up to the next level. Given the right focus and attitude, those swimmers could make it to the top levels.
I coached every swimmer with the same underlying idea: you can if you will.
Every day I challenged the young swimmers to do better than they had done the day before. It wasn’t about beating the person next to them (and if they were caught looking at the other swimmers they had to swim a lap for each peak). It was all about doing better than self.
Which leads us back to the article that started us down this rabbit hole, you are not writing to be the next King, or Tolkien, or Lucado. You are writing to tell your story, in your way, for the one reader you know needs or wants the story (even if that one reader is you.
If you are writing to make a bunch of money, then your words will show that to the reader.
If you are writing because you have a passion for the story, then your words will show that to the reader.
Guess which direction will connect the most with the readers out there?
There was one thing that I completely agreed within this article. The writer mentions that writing is an art. I say this often because the writing is the art part of the industry. Like all art, the words will not appeal to everyone. That is okay.
But, like all art, there is a craft element to the completion of each work of art. With a picture, you need the right frame. With word working, you need the right finish. There is more than just the raw product.
Writing is the art and editing (and then re-writing from those edits) constitutes the craft side of the work of art.
The craft elements come after the work of art. Without writing your story, you have nothing for which to implement the craft part.
Write because you do have a story to tell and your story has value.
Write because you want to write.
Write because you love words.
Just never allow someone else to tell you that you can’t. If you decide you can then you can.
Writing is that simple.