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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

IWSG August 6, 2014 - Write! #IWSG

First Wednesdays come very quickly, far faster than other days.  It is now time for the Insecure Writer's Support Group post. This is the once-a-month blog hop started by Alec Cavanaugh . IWSG = Insecure Writers' Support Group .  We share our insecurities and support each other with empathy, sympathy and  practical suggestions. 

I was speaking recently with someone who is disheartened.  He is experienced, and while he is only recently published, he has written for years, and through the years has honed his craft.  He tells good stories.

But there are others that he sees, those who put out products that – to him, at least – do not have a whole lot of merit.  They crow of their successes, they flaunt what he thinks are fabulous sales numbers, while he has nothing to boast of.  He just does not fit in.

I replied that some of the great writers did not fit in.  They did what felt best to them and never lost sight of who and what they were, and the source of their joy.  He is a writer: he should write and follow his own path (taking advantage of the aid offered, of course.)

I sometimes break into (pretty bad) poetry, and for this post I decided to offer this bit of doggerel, which expresses my musings on my friend's questions:

What am I?  (With a nod to Jean Valjean and a bow to Shakespeare)

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
Alas, that I should take this wearying path
That windeth through such perilous wilderness,
And with this throng;

'Tis certain that my steps herein shall lag
Through many deserts without hope of aid
with choices wrong –

To follow my own heart, or heed the cries
Of those who claim to know the secret pass
That leadeth to the land of fame and wealth –
'Tis sure they lie and knoweth not their way –
...Or do they?

I fear that perils loom on ev'ry side,
My own heart tells me that they menace me
With thoughts of quick success, such as might wreck my gift -
And leave me with no hope.

So then, I think: what am I to do?

The urge within me says to simply write,
To let the words flow from me to be read;
To glory in the spate of thought and act
Capturing the joy of times long past
When telling tales held me in joyous thrall –
But is it right—?

But is it right?

The question still remains, and so I ponder it.
As I have pondered through all the passing years;
Who am I?

…And the answer comes:

What have you sought to be through years of waiting?
The glad times you sought words and let them dance,
The tales you spun,
The way your heart had sung
And you knew the path was true.
And all else to the side.

Tell your stories.
I have been rediscovering my gift, and the joy that using it gave me.  I think we lose sight of it, of the reason we are writers.

In A Chorus Line, Cassie, who had done some solo work, exclaims, "God!  I'm a Dancer!  A Dancer dances!"

We're writers.  All else is to the side.  Without the writing we are nothing.

…So let's write!

Check out the hop.  There are some fabulous posts to savor:


  1. Yes, we must write. I hope your friend doesn't get discouraged and thanks for sharing this inspiring piece.

  2. "A writer writes, always." That's a line from a movie, but it's true. We can't get upset when we see the bad writers and the junk writers getting ahead, but need to stay true to our mission. So what if we don't get massive levels of recognition and support? Being a nationally famous writer has its downside as well.

  3. I like your poem--well done!

    I understand your friend's frustration. Who among us hasn't felt that way at one point or another? It's hard not to compare yourself to others and feel that you are lacking. You just have to keep going!

  4. Great post, Diana! Good on you being there for your friend. I know a lot of deserving writers who feel the same way he does. Who among us didn't scratch our heads over 'Fifty's phenomenal success, right? However that way lies the road to hell. I think your advice was spot on. Well done.

  5. Very inspiring poem. I think the frustration comes when we measure ourselves against another's "success". And what is success? Money? Fame? Or quality? How we define that will define our happiness with the outcome.


  6. I like the poem :) I hope your friend keeps at it, and remembers how much value has to share with the world!