When you have been writing for a while senior-citizen status begins to creep on you. How? Other writers start approaching you for occupational therapy: how does such crap get published when my book’s waaay better? how do I edit and not cut out the best parts? I am writing but am I meant to be a writer? When does this writing start to pay?
I peeped into my writerly vanity bag, frayed but wildly coloured still, and dug this out - take what you can and toss out what you can’t. What’s the point of being a writer if you can’t stick your tongue out and exhale noisily: the computer will stay and your pet has seen worse, right?!
What is a Writer to do? A 7-point Primer
First, know: nothing is owed to you.
Two, the world, of publishing and beyond, is not against you - it is indifferent. As the saying goes, the sun rises daily and puts on a magnificent show, yet most people in the audience go on sleeping.
Write because of the satisfaction of the written word - if you seek glory and riches, either write really badly or manage other people's money.
Every day, dig deep within for what is truest to you and holds meaning to you. Then sit your bum down and work, daily. Excellence, as Aristotle said, is not an act but a habit.
What do you really want to be? A fab Facebooker, a trendy Tweeter, or a great Writer? Get your priorities in line.
Can I really be a writer? Is there some simple test that'll provide the answer? Here you go: do you love your own company? can you deal with CRAP (criticism, rejection, assholes, pressure) and write merrily? after a full day of writing if you have only one line to show, will you not shoot yourself but go back to the blessed desk the following day and again? 3 Yesses and you’re in.
Close your eyes. Do you see yourself writing at 80? Why, then, you've found the purpose of life, for which which other folks trek to the Himalayas, or seek early retirement. If not, then, Veni, Vidi, Fugi!