Tonight, I am breaking my own rules. The rules that say I’m not one of those bloggers who spends 600 words at a time writing about myself. I don’t even like writing about myself. That’s not what I started Novelty Revisions for. It’s not about me. But I think what I have to say is important, and maybe someone else out there is feeling the same way, or a different way, and it can help reassure them.
What I have to say tonight is this: it is all going to be worth it someday.
If you’re a regular visitor to this blog, you know that for the past few months I have made sure to have a new post ready for you daily. Every. Single. Day. I don’t do this to get more traffic (it’s not worth getting caught up in that vortex). I do it because I want to be consistent, because I appreciate my just a little over 2.5 returning readers and feel they deserve to be able to read new content if they want it.
Sometimes it’s good, sometimes it isn’t. Honestly, if I only published the posts I thought were good, I would rarely even post once a week. You’re not going to like everything I post, and that’s fine. I cannot please everyone. I stopped trying to a very long time ago, and I’m better for it.
It isn’t like it’s easy, doing what I do. Sometimes I can crank out a weeks’ worth of posts and it’s not that big of a deal. But then days like today happen, when I don’t wake up when my alarm goes off. When I need to take a spontaneous lunch date with my mom because family and friends always come first. When all of a sudden it’s seven o’clock at night and I know I haven’t written a post for Novelty Revisions yet and the inside of my head is screaming.
The last thing I wanted to do today was write. And if it had been a few months ago, I probably would have skipped working on my novel, and writing a blog post, and I would have put off writing an article until tomorrow. But tomorrow isn’t going to be any less busy, and if this stuff doesn’t get done today, it never will. I’ve learned over the past few months that if I want to succeed—and I mean, really succeed—I can’t just quit.
By the time my clock hit five this afternoon, I was stressing big time. I’m technically in finals mode (my graduate program runs 7-week courses) and am weaving together a 15-page paper at the moment. College Lifestyles is entering a new internship semester (which means I am in full management mode and it’s amazing and insane), I’m training for a half marathon and ran seven miles this morning, I’m filling out as many job applications as I can tolerate—at the moment it’s too much. Yet at five, I stopped what I was doing and I said to myself, “Open your book and start writing. Now.”
I don’t advocate for forcing yourself to write when you could lie down on the floor and go to sleep right this second. But the thing about me and writing is, writing is how I channel my stress and anxiety and basically all feelings and emotions into a healthy outlet. To the point where, if I don’t write often enough, I pretty much start losing my mind. I went seven months without journaling once and the outcome was disastrous.
Today was the first time in a long time I realized I was thinking, “I can’t do this.”
I guess when my temporary job ended in April I thought I’d bounce right back. I thought I’d go right back to 11-hour days and working on my book/writing blog posts in the evenings. But it doesn’t work that way. Suddenly my book has become my biggest priority, and that’s scaring me. Because that’s not what I wanted to happen. I almost quit being an English major in college because this is not how I wanted things to go.
I love my book. I block out time to work on it every single day because it is my baby and I would be lost without it. But I am afraid that I will get too caught up in my story, and it’s not like it was in high school when it didn’t matter if I spent hours and hours writing. I have other commitments.
I have other goals. Sure, one of them happens to be finishing my book before November. But I’m aware enough to realize writing will never be able to support me, and I absolutely cannot afford to fall into the trap of believing, all of a sudden, maybe it could. I am prolific when it comes to writing, I am writing all the time, but that doesn’t mean it’s good. That doesn’t mean it’s great.
Yet I still fall asleep thinking about my story, and secretly, I’m anxious about ending it. That’s common, a lot of writers feel that way when they’re getting closer to finishing their stories. More often than not I wish I could just have one day to do nothing but write, because it is so relaxing and freeing and exhilarating to me. But I’m an adult and I have a job and a blog and stories to pitch to magazines and grad school to ace.
Looking at all I have going on, you’re probably wondering how I do it. Well, probably not, I know you don’t care that much and I’m not even a little bit offended. But if you were wondering how, it’s simple: I just do it. I just have so much faith that, somehow, all this hard work, all this writing and wanting to write and having more to do than there are hours in the day, it’s going to be worth it. I’m not going to regret it. Because I like to think that when I’m writing something, I’m helping somebody somewhere. That’s all I want to do in life, is help people.
I have to write an article after this. I don’t think I can do it. But I’m going to do it anyway, because whatever I end up writing about, somebody will read it. And maybe somebody will feel inspired to do something, and make their life better, and if that’s all I’m in this world to do, is use words to make the world better, I’m okay with being so tired I can’t keep my eyes open. It is worth it to me, every single word.
Image courtesy of Novelty Revisions.
Meg is a twenty-something workaholic with a passion for writing, coffee and health. In addition to her status as an aspiring novelist and Grammar Nazi, Meg is the managing editor at College Lifestyles magazine and a guest blogger for Food & Nutrition Magazine. She is a seven-time NaNoWriMo winner and has written several creative pieces for Teen Ink. Follow Meg on Twitter.