I read Stephen King’s memoir, On Writing, years ago. It is the only thing I have ever read of King’s, as his books just don’t really sound like my style. Truthfully, even though I loved this book and thought it offered a lot of great advice to writers, I never actually finished it. I remember reading the majority of it on a plane. I marveled at the great advice and felt really inspired, and then never picked it up again. Eventually I returned it to the friend who had lent it to me.
This didn’t keep me from loving the concept of this book and recommending it to every writer I know. A professor of mine even added it to one of her class reading lists because of the suggestions of a few of us in the class.
Today, while scouring the web for resources for a work article, I stumbled upon this infographic. It sums up the most important parts of the book in a quick, easy-to-read format. All the motivation, none of the slog. I still recommend reading the book, as it gives you a lot of insight into King’s journey as a writer, and the sacrifices it takes to (possibly) make it big in the writing industry. If your “to-read” list is already quite long and daunting though, the infographic is enough for now.
This year I’ve resolved to actively pursue my passion for writing. I am at a job where I get to write daily. I’m collaborating with a group of writers from work to put together a collection of short stories to publish. I have so many story ideas that need to get written down. I have done a decent job so far of posting regularly on this blog (though it’s only been ten days…). I feel optimistic.
I’m back into reading a bit every day as well too. I am currently reading Grimm’s Fairy tales. I read a couple each night, and then talk about them with my partner, who is doing the same. Last night, I almost texted him last night to tell him we’d skip it, because I was really tired. Then I decided that we were doing so well; I’d go ahead and read the stories. After all, it was only about 10 pages. Though this was a small act, it was an important one.
I am a procrastinator. I tend to put things off, start projects and never finish them, and generally be a bit lazy. Yesterday I overcame the temptation to be lazy and did the simple task I had set myself: to read from Grimm’s Fairy Tales every day.
If you looked at that infographic, you’ll see that I’ve been acting on some of the points. I stopped just talking about writing and started doing it, even if it’s just a little bit each day. I’ve dedicated myself to reading more. I chose to do this because it’s my passion and I find joy in it. I’m sticking to it even on days when I don’t really feel like it.
The thing is, I did this without thinking consciously about it. It’s been years since I read On Writing. I didn’t see this infographic until today. But the information was in my head. I didn’t act on it when I read it, but it swam around in there until my desire to achieve my dreams became strong enough for me to act. The tools were inside me; I just needed to use them.
Seeing this today made me realize that I am on the right path and if I keep it up, I am capable of achieving my dreams.