This week, when sorting through my writing notes, I made a very interesting discovery. In one of my journals, I found the initial seed of the idea for my first book, written two years before my supposed eureka moment!
Amazingly, this piece of paper had been completely forgotten about, yet the idea stayed in my subconscious and resurfaced two years later, as if for the first time! While the initial seed differed slightly from what I thought was the initial seed, it was the same idea in essence.
What I’ve learned from this is that some ideas are very persistent and will stay with you throughout your life, begging to be brought into the world. They may lie dormant for a time, but they always find a way to return to you. This is reassuring for a writer like myself who clings on to his notes for fear of losing his ideas – clearly such written prompts are not needed, nor are they re-visited much once written. Of course, I’m not saying you shouldn’t keep notes, as you just don’t know what notes might spark your imagination, but I’m merely pointing out how persistent our ideas can be.
Throughout your life, you may have many ideas, some great and some not so great. What I recommend is focusing on the ideas that really sing to your heart. Don’t give a hoot what others might think. If you’re going to express yourself, then it should be something that appeals to you.
You are the judge. You are the gatekeeper of your ideas, who gets to decide which ones are worthy and which are not. But how do you choose what should take priority? Oh, that’s easy! I think you already know deep down which ideas are special. They are the ideas that refuse to go away.
There is nothing that should stop you from doing what you love.
Life is too short to live in regret, so stop making excuses and dive straight in there! You may be busy, you may be encumbered with responsibility, you may be limited by ill health, but no obstacle should stand in the way of your goals. Many writers suffer great hardship to create their work.
Other writers, however, have a relatively easy ride. I am among this group of writers, who have very little responsibility and can devote a lot of time to their craft. But regardless of how much spare time you have, you can always put some time aside for your hobbies, even if it’s just a few minutes per day. A long-term project like a novel requires patience and persistence to complete, so all writers need these qualities.
Another thing that shouldn’t hold you back is what other people think of you. Don’t worry about the opinions of others… you don’t need their praise or approval. You should write because you want to, not to impress your peers! So if you’re new to writing or you’re an existing writer who is doubting themselves, then please do not worry. Deep down, you know what you want to do with your life and you should not be embarrassed by this.
Sometimes, life can get in the way of your passions.
The last time I did any story-writing was back in February when I finished my second book, which saddens me slightly. But I have resolved that there’s nothing stopping me from writing little tidbits or small stories to keep the passion alive. In fact, I think that a little bit of daily writing would help to get the cogs turning and sharpen my focus when getting on with other tasks.
At the moment, I’m setting up a business, which is highly time-consuming! But thankfully, it’s a creative business that still allows me to come up with characters and plot-lines, so it’s not all bad! And the whole reason that I’m doing it is to create an income to give myself more time to write stories!
Sometimes though, I just yearn to pick up the pen and return to my true love. But I realise that I must be patient and persist with the task at hand… only then can I achieve true freedom to write stories whenever I desire.