Believe Your Own Words

Words have power. If you don’t believe this, you’re not a writer. Writers know this to be true, though sometimes we have a little trouble understanding what that really means.

We have a thought, and we write it down, or type it up, or say it out loud. The words we put together and record have the power to make people think and wonder. They trigger imagination. They bring tears and laughter.

As a reader and a writer, I know what a powerful tool this can be. To see these reactions in others gives me a sense of pride, but also a deep humility.

However, as the person sitting at the keyboard, I forget the power of the words I hear in my own mind. Not the story unfolding keystroke by keystroke, but the mental conversation of self-talk. I too often allow doubt enter that vocabulary. Will anyone even bother to read this? This story is completely lame. I don’t even know what genre this is. How can I explain this to anyone else?

That is the conversation that we must banish from our brains. Replace it. It’s easier said than done, but we have to erase those thoughts if we ever plan to have any measure of success.

Someone needs to read your story. They are searching for it right now, so get to work. It’s not boring or bland—and if it is today, it’s only because you haven’t applied the polish to it that you’ll find tomorrow. Once you get it finished, revised, edited, and shiny, you’ll discover exactly what genre it is, and you’ll be able to sell it to just the right person.

Speak encouragement to yourself every time you sit down to write. Remind yourself that someone is counting on you. Think of your favorite book. What if the author had given up before it was finished? Don’t let that happen to your reader. Treat yourself kindly. Have a positive conversation with your inner author. And believe yourself. (You’re pretty great.)

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