November 16, 2010
There's the love-hate relationship with writing itself, the agony of self-doubt, the burning desire to put your story out there, the discipline. The need for solitude in a society that mistrusts loners. An ego big enough to pursue your dreams and strong enough to battle the demons that will rise to thwart you. And they will rise, oh, how they'll rise!
Frankly, the part about ego caught me by surprise. I thought anyone plagued by feelings of notworthiness (is there such a word?) lacked self-esteem. But that's exactly what keeps us going. We're convinced our stories need to be told, that no one else can tell them the way we can. We brave the blank screen, we never give up. And perseverance, in Lerner's opinion, is the best predictor of success.
Whatever the catalyst (anger, pain, joy, curiosity, payback, obsession) writing is a way we prove ourselves to the world. Remember that mousy girl who hid in the back row at school? The one who blended with the walls in a crowd? Under that shy exterior, a writer lurked, watching and waiting. Now she's ready to share her stories.
So, how's your writing ego these days?