Inspiration is Bullshit

I am going to tell you something that sounds obvious but will make your life a lot easier: writing (or whatever else you are contemplating attempting) is work.

       I am going to refer to writing in this article as the activity you might be contemplating but not doing much about, but this applies to everything worth achieving in life.

       If you wait for the right moment to start a blog or write a novel you will never get started and you will never improve.

       If you sit staring blankly at your computer screen or piece of paper nothing much will happen.

       Daydreaming may be underrated but it is not necessarily related to your writing. The most important thing is planting yourself firmly in your chair and actually writing.

      This is the only way you will get better and indeed the only way you will produce anything: by actively beginning.

       If you can’t think of anything to write about, write about how boring life and writing are.

      In Frank O’Hara’s poem “ Why I Am Not A Painter” the speaker writes :

One day I am thinking of
a color: orange. I write a line
about orange. Pretty soon it is a
whole page of words, not lines.
Then another page. There should be
so much more, not of orange, of
words, of how terrible orange is
and life. Days go by. It is even in
prose, I am a real poet. My poem
is finished and I haven’t mentioned
orange yet. It’s twelve poems, I call

      Like the speaker in the poem, you may start by thinking or feeling one thing but your writing may take you in another direction.

       There are times when your fingers won’t be able to keep up with your ideas. Take it as it comes but face reality and write even when you don’t feel like it (this is when I do my best writing!).

      The best possible thing you can develop is the practice of writing daily. It does not matter if you write for an hour in the morning or late at night, for a full eight hours per day, or only on your breaks at work.

       It has helped me to have a consistent daily schedule. Block out the time you are going to write and commit to getting it done.

 The most important thing great writers have in common is they forced themselves to actually write. Write and Write and Write.

      The other thing you should do is read. Study other writers. Think about what is awful or exciting or beautiful in the things you have read.

       You can write about that. You can use that in your own writing by quoting the work or by responding to what you read.

Join the conversation.

Now get out there and write something ( or start your business, workout plan, etc. Whatever your goal is, the time to begin is now).

At the beginning of anything worth reading,  there was just a person and a blank page.

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