Writers don’t need inspiration, they need practice
I was thinking about this title on my way about home when I was thinking I needed to update my blog and whether or not I was a writer. I believe I have become a writer in the last few years because I worked for it. Do you want to be a writer? Better forget inspiration, then.
I have a bachelor degree in Journalism so writing was always part of my life. I use it as my ideal way to express opinions, jokes and feelings. I couldn’t spend a day without reading or writing. Even some e-mails with long detailed operations and messages can be considered writing.
When I started my real blog almost three years ago, I know how hard it would be to be consistent and to write on a weekly basis. I am not even talking about social media promotion or content practices. I am just thinking about plain writing. Start a post. Create an argument. Test an idea. Write, edit, post.
During the last years, I realized that you really need to take the time to write on your blog.
I usually take Sunday mornings to do it or I can write weekly after work. Most times I am working on the month of August and as there isn’t much work to be done, I find free time to write a blog post that will only be published in September. That gives me some relief, as I can enjoy the summer.
However, as I am returning from vacation, I know that I need to save some proper time to write. Excluding editing and reviewing and SEO practice, which can take an hour when I have the post already structured and written, it becomes hard to find time to write when all you want to do is rest and have fun.
Every free time that I have right now is busy between going out and check new places and have coffee with friends — so when do I actually write?
As you become a professional writer or a consistent blogger, you will find many tools that can help you feed your mind with a new idea and your blog with relevant posts.
You read about the topics you write so that you can have new ideas. You write on your phone using Evernote or other apps to not lose a peak of inspiration. You open a post and start typing simple ideas that will be the structure of your post. You save news articles to discuss different opinion views.
All of this is just in research. However, you can spend a full week of just researching but then you need to do the writing part.
Mind you that this research is not paid for. A paid blogger will be paid by the post, not for the amount of time they spend researching and editing the post. If you just blog for fun, don’t no payment is done, only time invested.
So when it comes to writing, some people share the myth that writers only work when they are inspired. Or that it’s just writing a couple of pages every now and then and bam — there’s a book for you. However, this is simply 1000% not true.
I have moments during the day that I really feel the need to write and I feel productive enough to write a full blog post. But I always need to review it, you will never get it in the first draft. These moments don’t happen once a week or everything morning. All other moments you need to create them. You will need to force your writing.
If you want to write a post per week, you will need to have “one inspiration moment” per week. As you don’t get it right the first draft, you will need a second inspiration moment. But you need to do it this week. Not that you really have to, is just you want to write and you have an audience and you want to post weekly. So you need to gather time to edit and review your post.
And that’s what I have learned in the past years about writing: writers rarely write inspired. We may be fired up with a writing moment but it takes much more transpiration and talent and work to actually pull it off.
When you are inspired, how can you be sure that that inspiration will come when you right sitting on the computer? Will it appear in the shower? When you are trying to sleep? And if the moment comes, will you just start writing or will you let it pass by?
A writer becomes a writer with consistency. To have consistency as in to have “the quality of achieving a level of performance which does not vary greatly in quality over time.”
That’s why I believe a writer is more about consistency and practise than inspiration. You always need to push through it, even when you don’t feel like it.
If you write 1 post per month, you will need 20 months to have twenty posts. But if you write 1 post per week, you will need 20 weeks, which is a quarter of the time to achieve the same result. However, when you write weekly, you will go beyond the 20 postmarks, as you will do it quickly and have more time to do it.
So if you want to be a writer, search a lot, read a lot but also write a lot. Nothing will be perfect in the beginning and you just gotta keep on trying. And even if you are good, you keep on trying. And even if you are really good, you keep on working. Because it’s consistency that will keep you «inspired» through life to keep on writing.