What do you do each day?
Do you take time to write, walk, cook, dance, sing? Do you read each night, and wake again to tea or coffee in the morning?
When you close your eyes and think of what you want your life to be, are you planting the seeds of that dream with everyday actions?
In her book, The Writing Life, Annie Dillard writes,
“How we spend our days is, of course, how we spend our lives.”
What do your days say about your life?
Me—I’ve always wanted to be a writer.
I’ve journaled regularly since I was 13, written countless essays and poems, but for a long time “being a writer” seemed like something I only grasped at.
What does a writer look like, after all? When does one actually become a writer?
I got the answer one college break during my senior year when my best friend’s mom asked me what I wanted to do after graduation.
“I want to be a writer,” I said.
“You already are a writer,” Ellen said.
I blinked. What?
“Well, don’t you write everyday? You write. So you’re a writer.”
This had never occured to me, and I took Ellen’s words and tucked them close to my heart.
That spring, the renowned essayist Phillip Lopate came to campus to give a writer’s talk.
At a round-table lunch with him, I asked, “Should I go to grad school after undergrad?”
He looked at me and said, “You should write. You should go out and see if you actually write when you’re not in school.”
He went on to talk about how many students he sees stop writing once they graduate, and I resolved not to be one of them.
So upon graduation, I took a job on a farm and woke up every day and wrote.
In the 10 years since, I’ve learned that being a writer is like being a farmer or gardener: it takes consistency, showing up day after day to plant seeds, tend the crops, pull the weeds.
Day after day of sprouting words into sentences, paragraphs, essays.
And, like farming, writing is easier with structure and community.
Since that spring day in 2009 when Phillip Lopate told me to write, I’ve attended writing conferences, been a part of writing groups, and taken stand-alone writing classes to continue growing my practice.
I’ve published in regional and national magazines, newspapers, and blogs.
Now, I’ve taken what works and put it together into a writing workshop designed for gardeners and farmers who know how to dig deep and get their hands dirty.
Maybe you’ve never really written before.
Maybe you used to, but somewhere along the way it dropped off.
Or maybe you do write, but you want to become a more effective writer so your words reach people right to their hearts.
Harvesting Words, a writing workshop for farmers and gardeners, can show you how.
You’re invited to join us as we tend to creativity. If you want to harvest words, click here to learn more.
Ask yourself again: how do you spend your days?
What are you doing today to seed your writing dreams?
Let me know in the comments below.