The Tenacity of a Writer by Melanie S. Pickett
The definition of “perseverance” is “steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.” (Dictionary.com) The synonyms for the same word are “tenacity,” “determination,” and “staying power.”
If you want to be a writer, one thing I know for sure is that perseverance tops the list of qualities you’ll need to possess. Almost none of us are overnight sensations. We write, toss, write, edit, toss, write again, edit, submit, cry over the rejection, celebrate every success (big or small). Repeat.
We do that for two reasons: it’s a process and we want to succeed at that process. No matter how many times we hear “no” or “not now”, we must persist. God gave us this dream of becoming successful writers because He’s got a plan for our words.
The thing is, we don’t always see exactly what that plan is through the tough perseverance. We just have to remember to keep going. Our words have value. Our words have a purpose. If we persist, we eventually see the fruit of our works (and our words).
I have written since I was old enough to form words onto paper. Once I did it, I was hooked. I wrote about everything. I asked for pads of paper and cool pens as gifts when I was a child. I had that bump on my middle finger, the one that was dented in while writing and swelled back out after the pen or pencil had been pressed in for so long.
I adored that look. I was proud of it. Even now, as my fingers don’t touch pens nearly as much as they used to, thanks to the digital age, I still have what appears to be a small bump in that area: it’s scar tissue from perseverance. I still adore it.
I love that the definition of persevering says we’re also tenacious. We are determined. We have staying power. Remember those things about yourselves, sweet writer friends. Remember them when you see your Facebook writer page likes fall a little. Remember them when you can’t seem to get your Twitter followers to budge even one person. Remember them when you get a rejection letter or you feel blocked or when you suffer from temporary imposter syndrome, wondering when people will discover you’re not a “real writer.”
This is not a life for the weak. We writers are strong. Many of us have incredible stories of pain and strength to share. God has brought those stories to the writing table to form into books to encourage others for when they’re suffering. Some writers are funny. Others have a natural gift of teaching and can guide others through certain processes.
But we all have the gift of perseverance. After all, we persevered to even get to the place where you call yourself a bonafide writer. You probably were a closet writer for some time, never showing anyone your work. Then when you really got the bug to start a blog or submit your work, you wondered when you could call yourself a writer.
That’s right now, by the way. If you’re writing, you’re a writer. You don’t have to be an author to be a writer. I grappled with that one for awhile. One of my wildest and best dreams is to be a published author; to have a book with my name on it that will help other women who’ve struggled through abuse like I have. But because I haven’t achieved that just yet, doesn’t make less of a writer. I write. Therefore, I am a writer. If you write, you are a writer.
Believe in yourself and your ability. Be steadfast and use your tenacity and staying power to keep moving forward towards your big writing dreams!
Melanie Pickett is a blogger who writes about abuse survival, faith, and family atMelanieSPickett.com. Melanie is currently completing her first nonfiction book. Melanie contributes regularly at The Mighty and Defying Shadows. She has been published on BlogHer, Splickety Magazine, Whole Magazine online, and Sonoma Christian Home where she is an Associate Editor Intern. Melanie is a wife and proud mother of two beautiful teenagers. You can also find Melanie athttps://twitter.com/MelanieSPickett, and https://www.facebook.com/melaniespickett/