The first article of this blog dedicated to creative writing is entitled Rule number 1 to become a writer and deals with the fundamental characteristic to be able to define writers.
Today, on the other hand, after almost three years from that article and with the experience gained in writing coaching with many aspiring authors, I want to tackle the subject from an opposite point of view.
I want to dispel the myth of inspiration and explain to you that if you miss some inner levers, then maybe writing is not for you. Simply.
From Private Writing …
When someone who does not know me asks me what job I do and I explain that I write and correct texts for others, in most cases I hear myself reply: “Ah, how nice, I too have a book!” Or: “I too have an excellent idea for a book”.
The truth is that we all have stories that run in our minds, because they are real stories that we have witnessed or told, and that we would like to tell in turn, or better still, in writing.
After all, the idea of writing and publishing a book is still a myth for many, synonymous with success and authority.
And in fact in many cases writing and publishing a book can bring, if not its fame, at least notoriety and good satisfaction.
The point, however, is that from having a good story in mind to make this story interesting for the reader, too, passes by. And what marks the distance between the dream and reality is precisely the artisanal and chisel work of writing, which many ignore or underestimate.
We can all write, if we intend to write with a pen in front of a blank sheet or with the keyboard in front of the monitor. In the past years on the school benches we have all written the little thoughts first, then the themes. Everyone, if we wish, can fill daily pages and pages of a personal diary with our thoughts and our reflections. So we can all write for the sake of writing.
Writing in this way, however, means writing privately, as a personal outlet, as fun, as a hobby. And it’s a fun hobby, sometimes even therapeutic.
But this does not mean that what we write is interesting for others, even more so if these “others” must even pay to read it. Writing for the sake of writing is therefore very different from writing to publishing.
… To Public Writing
So if your goal is to write to publish, that is, to “publicize” your text, then what you write must be set up in a way that works, that is, according to a valid narrative structure or in a stringent logical order; then it must be reviewed and corrected, and be examined by professionals in the sector.
If you plan to publish your private writings online as they are and then succeed “because so many do”, or “because that guy became famous by publishing his diaries”, then prepared for certain disappointment.
Writing to publish means preparing an editorial “product” that will first have to intrigue readers, so that they can buy it, and will then have to meet their expectations, so that they can appreciate it.
The fact that today technology and the network provide easy and immediate tools to “publish” a book does not mean that publishing is in itself easy and above all does not mean that everything we write is worthy of being published.
“A good writer does not recognize himself so much from what he publishes as from what he throws in the wastepaper basket,” said Gabriel Garcia Marquez.
And it is just so: what is published is only a (minimal) part of what is written, because it passes through multiple filters that verify the opportunity, the structure, the correctness, the effectiveness.
Write Is For Everyone, Publish No
Therefore, if in the article of three years ago we established that a true writer writes, always and without making excuses, today we can add a corollary to that first rule: it is not enough to sit down and write consistently to be able to publish.
If it is the first time that you pass through the pages of this blog, my statements may seem too rigid and categorical, but if you follow me for a while, you know that I don’t like to deceive the authors and give false hopes.
I like talking clearly and saying things the way they are.
So, if you have written pages and pages so far and maybe even put them online, making them public and maybe even selling them, but you haven’t had the satisfactions you were expecting, know that among the options you have available there is also that to let it go.