Yep, you read that title correctly. You shouldn’t read this blog. Stop right now.
Because you should be off somewhere writing.
I used to read so many writing blogs. Probably at least one third of the time I spent at the computer was reading blogs.
Why was I reading them?
- I wanted to learn more about writing (because there’s always something more to learn about writing).
- I wanted to understand the trends in the publishing industry so I could keep up with the curve.
- I wanted to know what my fellow writers were writing about so I could comment.
- I wanted to make friends with other writers and share guest posts with them.
- Most of all, I thought it would make me a better writer in the long run.
Are any of these reasons sounding familiar?
Some blogs made me feel positive, others stressed me out and still others made me feel utterly overwhelmed. I started wondering to myself:
- Can I really make it as a writer?
- How will I ever remember all of these things?
- The industry is changing so fast. Is it a good thing? Is it a bad thing? Will it be stable enough by the time I want to publish?
Each day my approach to the page was altered by the latest blog post I’d read. Should I be writing fast? Should I be writing slow? How many words a day is a good average? Are my characters strong enough? Am I using too many adverbs? Will this piece be marketable? How am I going to get my em dashes to show up correctly on Kindle?
Each time my husband would catch me at the computer reading a blog, he’d tap me on the shoulder and say, “You shouldn’t be reading. You should be writing! You know all this. Just write!”
It took me a while to see the wisdom in his words. After all, aren’t the best writers the ones who keep reading? How am I going to learn and improve if I don’t listen to the experience of other writers?
Finally, gradually, I switched my focus. I made sure I started my day with my writing rather than reading blogs.
And you know what? I learned more from my daily writing practice than I had learned from the blogs I’d been reading.
Because I’d found the things that worked for me. Yes, there were plenty of things I’d learned while reading blogs, but they didn’t do me any good until I actually worked things out for myself on the page.
Am I saying that you should never read a writing blog?
Well…that might be going a bit far, but it’s at least worth considering – even if its just for a couple of weeks.
See what kind of a writer you are when it’s just you and the page. Because in the end writing has nothing to do with what you do and don’t agree with in other people’s posts. It’s got nothing to do with how many adjectives you use in your prose. It’s got nothing to do with the latest numbers from Amazon or the latest demise of a bookstore chain.
It has to do with the magical thing that happens when you turn letters into words, words into sentences and sentences into stories. That’s what writing is.
You definitely can’t do that while reading this blog or any other.
If you do want to keep up your blog reading routine, then ask yourself these questions about each blog you visit.
- Would I be better off writing right now, instead of reading?
- Does this blog make me feel excited about myself and my writing or does it leave me feeling deflated, perhaps even depressed?
If you’re not up to writing, and the blog keeps you creatively buoyant, then it’s worth a read. Otherwise, get yourself back to your writing – because you’re a writer and that’s the best place for you to be.
Whenever I post to Creativity’s Workshop I work hard to keep the subjects positive and inspiring. I aim to motivate you to find your own creative and prolific writing routine. But at the end of the day, I hope to see you writing.
So if you’re too busy writing to read my blog, then I am very, very happy for you! I wish you a happy and fulfilled writing life.
If you want to be busy writing but you can’t get yourself into a good creative routine, then sign up for a creative coaching session and we can talk about finding your creative rhythm.