Are You A Professional? Are You A Writer?

Your alarm goes off. Your entire body twitches, startled, then relaxes and you hit snooze. Soon you’re forcing yourself into a sitting up position and staring through the slits in your eyelids at the far wall. Eventually you get yourself into the bathroom and hopefully are more awake by the time you come back from whatever morning ritual and plant yourself  in front of a computer screen.

You don’t want to write/edit/blog/tweet/character sketch/outline etc. This, is how you know you’re: a professional.

I don’t know where I read it. I’ve read so many self-help books when it comes to writing. So many books in general. It could’ve been in a million different places. But one thing I’ve always remembered: if you do something enough to the point that you don’t want to do it anymore, yet you do it anyway, that makes you a professional.

So congratulations. You’re a professional.

Sometimes, I think it helps. For writers, it’s easy to feel like a loser, like you’re putting all your time and effort into thin air and you have nothing to show for it. We need all the ego boosts we can get.

It’s easy to sit in your chair and mope. Am I even a writer? I have nothing published. . Am I even professional? I don’t even have an agent. .

Get over it. You don’t have anything published YET. That‘s why you’re working so hard. You don’t have an agent YET. But once they see the manuscript – whoo – they’ll be blown away.

With writing, you need some confidence. In yourself. It’s easy to lose that confidence and give up because your story’s crap and your pacing is horrible, and your sentences are too long, and you still can’t think of that one word that you had a minute ago and now it’s on the tip of your tongue but you can’t remember and Dictionary.com isn’t helping. .

If you’re a professional. Treat yourself as one. Wear reading glasses and hold your hair up with a pencil. Buy a stack of post-its and stick them everywhere. Take your laptop to Starbucks and write and sip coffee like you’re always hearing people do. Make a writing schedule for yourself. And a deadline if you need one.

Whatever makes you FEEL like a writer, do it. Dress like you’re going to work even if you’re staying at home. If this is a job, treat it like one too.

Soon you won’t feel guilty calling yourself a writer, because that’s what you are. What do you do all day? Write. Why are your wrists cramping and you eyes bloodshot? From writing.

If you’re a professional writer, treat yourself as one. Call yourself one. Act like one.

It’s all a big mind game to get you and keep you writing, honestly. But hey, like I said, if all you do is write, what does that make you in the end? A writer. 😉

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