Ever been in a writer’s funk? When the likes or followers aren’t coming, no one’s commenting, it’s natural to ask [cry] why-yyyyyy!? <LOL> Okay, maybe I’m being like dear Rey from the Triple Threat Investigation Agency: melodramatic.
Still, you wonder. Is it me? What’s wrong with the blog? Why didn’t he/she like the post or book? Am I boring? Not innovative enough? Have I got what it takes?
This prompted an idea for a post: how to maintain writer confidence. (I’ll confess [honesty is a good thing] that I’ve often struggled with it.)
The most important conviction a writer should possess is confidence. Yes, skill and talent are vital too, but these can be developed with time and practice. Sureness is a must. With it comes positivity and optimism, which translates into enthusiasm.
When you believe in yourself and what you do, you have a take-charge attitude. You look forward to developing and completing those writing projects. . . . And how do we maintain/boost confidence?
Social media is a great place to start. Join writing communities and post on them. The exchanges—and subsequent support—are uplifting (to say the least). It’s amazing how wonderful you feel when you’ve shared ideas and thoughts, offered and received gratitude. On a similar note, see what fellow bloggers and writers are up to. Post/comment on their sites, as you see fit. Besides learning a few interesting and valuable things, you’ll make friends, to be sure. The more you network, the more reinforcement you’ll receive. Find the right [best] support for you.
Even when nothing’s flowing from those creative fingertips—you can’t seem to get into it—continue writing. Keep at it. Keep busy. Keep it (return later and revise/delete as you deem fit). Reflect on: why you write, what got you excited about it, why you’ve been doing it for as long as you have, who inspired you and why.
Some non-confidence moments may be due to the fact that we writers and bloggers tend to set [tremendously] high expectations for ourselves (I know I do). So if there’s a stumble or tumble, boom (!) goes the assurance. When this occurs, we need to carry on writing, no ifs or buts.
What about those discouraging moments when someone has something negative to say re a post or book? First and foremost, accept the fact it’s going to happen. Murphy’s Law. Maybe the criticism is legit, maybe it’s not; consider the person it came from. Even though the comment or advice is disheartening, maybe you can use it you can use it to your advantage. If it truly sounds like sour grapes, ignore it. I know, easier said than done, but negative comments are simply subjective opinions (one person’s treasure is another’s junk, something like that).
Take breaks to boost a flagging spirit. Sitting at a laptop for 10-12 hours a day may work for some (heartfelt kudos to those of you who do), but some of us need breaks to clear thoughts, loosen stiff limbs, enhance mental thoughts. Go and do something you enjoy, something that will make you feel good and detract from negativity.
Having a schedule helps. Commit to a certain number of hours per day or week. The obligation and focus will lessen any lack of confidence getting in the way.
Remember that you’re a writer/blogger and don’t question if you’re doing it right; just go for it and do it. We learn as we develop (and we develop as we learn) and that’s awesome. If we were great authors from Day 1, what would we aspire to?
Confidence enables us to remain focused on the craft. The more we write, the more we discover and absorb. When those down or doubting moments occur, go Googling. Get inspired—be it through quotes, inspirational or spiritual videos and tales, fellow writers’ successes in overcoming challenges, or simple hands-on guidance re boosting self-assurance.
The life of a writer and blogger can be quite lonely, given the time dedicated to our passion—but we know this and it’s all good. So when you’re ambling down that proverbial dark tunnel, recognize that—yes!!!—there is always a vibrant light at the end.