I’m going to be shifting things a little here at The Positive Slant.  Eventually, I hope to start a new Blog, in addition to this one.  For now, from time to time, I will side step slightly to talk about writing.

Writing, to me, is very spiritual.  A prayer I wrote for “The Artist’s Way” recently says how thankful I am  that writing can not only make a living for me, but it can also help me plumb the depths of my soul.

I believe that to be a writer you have to write.  Long and every day.  I had a teacher once who said you must write 100,000 words before you can consider yourself a real writer.  After having written an 800,00 word novel and edited it down to 100,000, plus 20 solid years of journalling, not to mention hundreds of writing projects, short stories, books and a handful of other novels, I believe I’ve earned the right to call myself a writer.

One of the things I love about writing is that most all of us can write.  We can use words to help plumb the depths of our soul.  Brenda Ueland said that everyone is original and talented, no matter your education or how many words you’ve written.  It may take  passion and dedication to be a ”writer,” but it takes very little to use words to find out more about who you are.

Whether you think you have a book in you or just want to understand yourself and life a little better, there is one key factor to writing: Showing up.  At the desk, the keyboard, the page.  You won’t get any writing done if you don’t.

It’s not something you can force.  But if you’re serious about writing, you have to find that discipline somewhere.  To show up day in and day out, no matter how you are feeling.

My concern is that many people truly do want to write. But they find all kinds of things to distract them.  Things that must be done, first, before any writing can happen.  Dusting or running errands, organizing or talking on the phone, any number of things can feel a lot easier to do than writing.

Writing is hard.  I happen to love everything about the process of it (and anticipate writing a lot about it in the future).  But the truth is, it’s work. It takes focus and brain power.  You may have to face some things you’d rather not. There are days, of course when it’s just not coming.  No matter how hard I try, I can’t find the words.  But I know one thing for sure.  If I don’t try, if I don’t put the pen to paper or fingers to keys, nothing will flow.

No matter how enticing the distractions may be, no matter how much easier they seem, no writing gets done until you show up to do it.