The next time Where-do-I-begin-itis strikes, here are some tips to help you bridge the gap between your fears and goals, so you can focus on your creativity:
1. When it comes to your writing career, start where you want to start.
Whether you want to start your career by blogging, or freelance writing for magazines, or writing your dream screenplay, any starting point is the « write » starting point. The only person who has to believe in your decision is you, so go with your instincts and write your ass off!
2. Write what inspires you. The money will follow.
Yes, we need to make a living to take care of ourselves and our families, but don’t become so desperate to transition to your writing career you’ll take any writing job that comes your way. If you do, the very reasons why you wanted out of the 9-5 rat race will spill into your writing. Write to inspire both yourself and your readers; believe in your ability and you’ll be off to a fulfilling (and paying) writing career in no time.
3. Quality not quantity, or quantity not quality? You decide.
Focus on your writing, as well as your creative process. Get to know your habits, your strengths, and your weaknesses in order to solidify a routine for yourself. Creating a routine will help you to adjust your lifestyle to include writing on a regular basis. Whether you write 5,000 words of typed vomit before getting into your groove, or whether you spend weeks perfecting your prose, learning what your natural writing process consists of will give you the determination to create a writing career at your own pace, and on your own terms.
4. If your surroundings are less-than-inspiring, create your own inspiration.
Whether your office is the size of a broom closet, or your friends and family look at you with sympathy instead of enthusiasm about your career choice, create your own inspiration. Follow writers you admire online, join a writing group, read writing-related magazines, or listen to music that fuels your creativity. Do anything and everything you have to do to kick yourself in the pants and keep those fingers typing.
5. Never forget why you love to write.
There will be hardships, criticism, and plenty of rejection as you build your writing career. Always focus on how writing makes you feel: go back to the beginning, when you first decided to become a writer, and revive the rush of excitement you felt when you made your decision. Hold onto that feeling, because it’s what will push you through future challenges.