I’m Not an Expert Writer, but… · 12 August 2023
I’m no expert, but I seem to keep giving writing advice to people.
Just because I have published a weekly blog since 2007 and just because I have published over a dozen print books and over twenty digital books and just because I have written several screenplays, does not make me an expert on writing. After all, not many people have read much of anything I have written. Yes, it is true that I have a faithful following (of surely less readers than I can count on my fingers). (That is counting both real and imaginary readers.) And yes, it is true that I write six days a week. But that does not make me an expert. At least not in my book.
Of course, I do not know that I consider myself an expert in much of anything I do. But that is another story and another point.
The point is that I do not know that I am accomplished enough of a writer to be giving advice to anybody. Which is a funny thought. After all, I have given writing advice in this blog several times. Then again, that advice is always the same. Write.
People are funny. Not everybody wants to be a writer, but there are enough people out there who do want to be writers that I bump into them every now and then. And when I tell them (or when I tell anybody for that matter) that I have written and published more than twenty books, they are always astonished.
Now, I am not sure whether they are astonished that I have written that much or they are astonished that it is me. I am sure that some of my friends and family wonder how I, this striving to be mediocre man, have written so much. Others just wonder how anybody can have written that much. Still others wonder how somebody can have written that much without anybody hearing about it.
The last wonderers need not wonder too much. After all, there are bestselling authors that nobody has heard of. Not that I can think of any off the top of my head, but I know they are out there. Authors who are prolific, but who are not household names. Authors who are not only prolific, but who have sold lots of books.
I am not one of those types of authors. I might be somewhat prolific, but I have yet to sell many books. There are some months that I sell no books at all. Okay, most months. And there are also books that I have not sold at all. Okay, most of my books. The thing is, I am not afraid to put those books out there. I do not know what to do once they are out there, but I do put them out there for people to read.
Which is my second piece of writing advice. (Do not worry, the first piece is coming.) Put yourself out there. Just publish something. There are Amazon and a whole lot of other places to self-publish. And self-publishing is easy. After all, if I can publish all those books, anybody can.
My first piece of advice (see, I told you it was coming) is advice that every author will give you, regardless of how successful the person is. Write. Just write.
It is funny. People say they are aspiring writers. They want to be writers someday. Well, for those who do not write, someday never comes. In fact, if you are aspiring to be anything, you need to stop aspiring and just start. Start doing. Start writing.
So once I tell aspiring writers that they need to just write and to write every day (six days a week anyway), they usually ask the inevitable question. How long? And my answer is simple. It does not matter. Just write six days a week. (Take a day off. It is good for you.) I remember when I started writing each day. There were days when I wrote a sentence. Or just a phrase. But I wrote something. That daily habit made me a writer. And if you start a daily habit, you will be a writer too. Not an aspiring writer, but a writer.
I suppose that I could have given this expert advice in just a few words – write and publish. But maybe that is why I prefaced my advice with the title. After all, I’m no expert, but the way to become a writer is to write every day.
© 2023 Michael T. Miyoshi
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