It’s not just you.
Writing, especially online, is hard.
It comes with more disappointment and frustration than it often feels like it should.
It often feels like you aren’t getting the opportunities, recognition, or compensation you deserve.
But in all this, you are not alone. Even if it feels that way.
Many writers have come before you, have been through what you’ve survived and have yet to endure.
They succeeded because they persisted. And you can, too.
All writers — perhaps excluding the select few who got published on the first try and were lucky, not the norm — get rejected outright, don’t hear back for months, or never hear anything at all.
They all spend years writing for no one but themselves, until someone else finds them.
All of them go through dark periods in which they want to quit, or they quit temporarily, or — at the very least — they start to wonder if anything they’re working on is even worth it.
No one lasts a lifetime without encountering setbacks, without making mistakes or selecting choices that turn out not be the “right” ones.
The journey of every writer is not, and never will be, a straight path. That is why you can’t write if you aren’t willing to exercise your own creativity. You have to find a way through, around, and over the obstacles. And sometimes, you have to do it alone.
But other times, you don’t.
The struggles of a writer are not always unique to writing (though many, if not most of them, are). Everyone wishes they could make money doing something they enjoy 100% of the time. Everyone struggles to balance work with their personal life. Everyone wants to achieve goals but doesn’t always want to work toward achieving them.
And everyone fears regretting not taking chances, not working hard enough. Not doing everything it takes to transform a dream into a reality.
When you’re feeling like you’re the only one who hasn’t “made it,” who hasn’t done anything exceptional with your skills, remember that the only way out of that doubt and darkness is to be honest. To admit that you aren’t perfect. To speak up about the parts of writing that are hard.
I started doing that — talking more about the things I don’t think writers talk about enough. And I accidentally created a community of writers who realized we all struggle with the same things, and we can support each other. Even just by “being here.”
It’s not just you.
We’re all in this together. And always will be.
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.