I have been writing for a long time.
If we want to get technical, I guess I started writing things down consistently when I was in first grade. My mom bought me my first “diary,” and I used it to tell my future self all about my life.
That eventually branched out into many other literary endeavors — poems and song lyrics, short stories, eventually books, a blog, and so on.
I’ve never stopped writing. I’ve gotten pretty good at it as a result, at least, that’s what I tell myself whenever I get up in the morning and don’t want to do the writing thing.
My writing has grown a lot this year, and I’ve grown along with it. But there’s something that’s been bothering me for a long time. And I feel it’s the best time of year to address it.
My biggest struggle this year has actually been not knowing what my audiences struggle with.
I spend a lot of time feeling guilty, because I often don’t struggle with the same things other writers do. I don’t have trouble finishing what I start, I always find time to write, I never seem to be short of ideas. My impostor syndrome tricks me into thinking I’m cheating somehow — that I’ve earned a lot of praise and recognition I just don’t deserve.
My biggest fear is that my strengths as a writer make me too closed-minded and unsympathetic toward my readers — and these are NOT things I want to stand in the way of connecting with and helping you.
I briefly, want to apologize if my advice or stories have ever come off the wrong way. Just because I’ve been doing this a long time does not mean I am “better” than anyone else, nor do I perceive myself that way. I have a lot of experience, and sometimes that’s a problem.
Since starting this blog, I have always aimed to help and encourage anyone who comes across my words. Sometimes I brush off others’ complaints with a simple, “Well, you’re just making it harder than it should be.” Maybe I’ve been wrong to look at the writing process that way.
I don’t know. No one has ever gotten mad at me for being blunt, for showering my readers in tough love. But sometimes I try to joke about things and it doesn’t carry over in blog posts and I hope no one has come away from any of my words feeling worse than when they got here.
Am I actually helping anyone? You guys tell me when I do, and I really appreciate that.
I just know there are a lot of struggling writers out there. And I’m a fixer. I like to offer solutions. I just wonder if mine are … I don’t know. Unhelpful.
It’s really hard to know these things for sure when your audience doesn’t tend to give suggestions back. And I don’t expect anyone to do this frequently. I appreciate that most of you understand that constructive feedback isn’t ALWAYS the best response.
But now’s the time to “speak” up. If you so desire.
I wanted to officially unofficially announce that I’m (maybe?) going to start offering coaching services to my Patreon supporters sometime in 2018.
I truly believe some one-on-one back-and-forth could really help a lot of people nail down what’s keeping them from their writing inspirations and help them make progress in whatever they’re working on.
It would really, really help me if you could give some insight into what your biggest writing hangups are. What’s that one hurdle you’ve tried to clear that you just can’t?
If you could leave your insights in a comment, that would really mean a lot to me. In return, I hope I can somehow incorporate your suggestions into this new thing I’m considering/trying.
Keep in mind that Novelty Revisions is mainly about the creative process. I want to focus this coaching on helping you get writing done — not on how to write, or how to get published, or how to make money. I’m not saying I won’t ever help you with these things on an individual level. I just need to keep the focus extremely narrow for now, to see if it’s even anything you guys are interested in.
If you aren’t, well, it just won’t happen and that’s the nature of creativity. Sometimes the stuff you want to make never gets made. That’s that.
Be honest. What’s driving your struggle bus? Let me know. I want to help, if you want me to.
Meg is the creator of Novelty Revisions, dedicated to helping writers put their ideas into words. She is a staff writer with The Cheat Sheet, a freelance editor and writer, and a 10-time NaNoWriMo winner. Follow Meg on Twitter for tweets about writing, food and nerdy things.