How do you become a successful writer? Success in writing can be spelled out with one simple acronym: WORK!
W- Write, write write! Writing isn’t talking about it. It’s not dreaming about the day you become an author. It isn’t even reading or studying about it. Writing is writing, the act of actually doing it. You are a writer because you write, not because you enjoy the subject or know a lot about it. No writer has ever been successful who didn’t write.
O- Overcome all obstacles. A quote from author Richard Bach hands in my office. “A professional writer is an amateur who didn’t quit.” So true. Writers must persevere through all obstacles. When you face rejection, pick yourself back up and try again. When you feel discouraged, renew your vision. Keep a positive attitude. Keep going no matter what.
R- Revise and polish. Everything you write is a rough draft until it’s revised and polished. Think of it like a tarnished teapot. The rough outline is there and something beautiful lies beneath the ruddy appearance, but it takes elbow grease to make it shine. The same is true of your writing. It takes editing, revising, and rewriting to get it in top condition. If you think your first draft is good enough, you’re wrong. All writing can stand improvement.
K- Kick your excuses to the curb. Successful writers make writing a priority. They don’t wait for long stretches of writing time that will never come. They don’t allow a busy schedule to crowd out writing. They plod on when they’re tired, when they’re facing trials, when life isn’t perfect. They don’t bow to excuses. Instead, they simply write.
Some say that writing doors open for the lucky. I’ve discovered that the harder I work the luckier I get. The more writing I produce, the more doors open for me. It’s not a magic formula that brings success in writing. It’s just one magic word: WORK!
Image by Landahlauts on Flickr