Advice for aspiring writers, Step 1: Stop aspiring
Headlined “25 things I want to say to so-called “aspiring” writers,” the post is a bracing splash of cold water to the face of any, well, aspiring writers. And it all starts with that very phrase:
1. NO MORE ASPIRING, DINGBATS
Here are the two states in which you may exist: person who writes, or person who does not. If you write: you are a writer. If you do not write: you are not. Aspiring is a meaningless null state that romanticizes Not Writing. It’s as ludicrous as saying, “I aspire to pick up that piece of paper that fell on the floor.” Either pick it up or don’t. I don’t want to hear about how your diaper’s full. Take it off or stop talking about it.
Some of my other favorites include “Reading does not make you a writer,” “Overnight success probably isn’t” and “Talking about writing is not the same as writing.” And since we just finished National Grammar Day, it’s a good time to note this pair of observations:
9. YOU NEED TO LEARN THE RULES …
… in order to know when they must be broken.
10. YOU NEED TO BREAK THE RULES …
… in order to know why they matter.
What advice would you give to “so-called ‘aspiring’ writers”? Mine is Make every word count.
Your turn, in the comments.