Staying the Writing Course

MaryAnn Diorio, PhD, MFA

The following article by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio is offered to fellow writers for personal use only. If you wish to re-publish these articles in your publication, you must request permission in writing from Dr. MaryAnn Diorio at drmaryann@maryanndiorio.com. These articles are copyrighted by International Copyright Law. All Rights Reserved.
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Writing is difficult work. What you may have heard about the glamour of the writing life is only partially true. Yes, you can make your own hours. Yes, you can work in your pajamas. Yes, you can take a nap in the afternoon if you need to.

But the truth of the matter is that writing is hard work. And it’s fraught with a gamut of emotions that are not usually found in other professions.

For example, the emotional roller-coaster ride of writing can either make you or break you, depending on how you handle it. Here are some of the emotional issues you will face if you choose writing fiction as your career:

  • Rejection. Rejection is an occupational hazard of writing.  Every writer I know has had his work rejected at one time or another. The key to handling rejection is to be objective about it. In other words, don’t take it personally. If you want to be a writer, you have to have thick skin.
          
  • Criticism. To succeed at the writing life, you will need to learn how to handle criticism.  Always remember that it is your work that is being criticized, not you. Again, learn to separate your writing from your worth. While this may seem impossible, it is doable and necessary. Moreover, it is true. How you write has nothing to do with your worth as a person.  A well-known speaker I once heard said something I’ve never forgotten. In speaking about self-worth, she said, “Your who is not your do.” Think of that sentence when your writing is criticized. Also, learn from the criticism. Maybe it simply indicates an      area in which you need improvement. If so, be thankful for the criticism. It will help make you a better writer.
  • Delay.  The writing profession requires more patience than virtually any other profession I know. It can take months before you receive a reply on a submission. In one case, I waited over a year before I heard back from the editor. To be successful as a writer, you will need to learn patience. Even when your manuscript      is accepted, it can take up to three years before you see it on a bookstore shelf or in a magazine. 

Lest you become discouraged by the negative emotions associated with writing, let me encourage you that there are far more positive ones. We’ll discuss them next time! 🙂

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Bio: Dr. MaryAnn Diorio writes riveting, compelling fiction that deals with the deepest issues of the human heart. Her stories will entertain you, move you, and transform you. MaryAnn has been happily married to Dom for 46 years. They are blessed with two amazing adult daughters, a wonderful son-in-law, and five precious and rambunctious grandchildren. When she is not writing, MaryAnn loves to spend time praising and worshiping the Lord, reading, painting, and playing the piano, cello, and mandolin. You may reach her at drmaryann@maryanndioro.com.

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Copyright 2016 by Dr. MaryAnn Diorio, All Rights Reserved and Protected by International Copyright Law. Violators will be prosecuted.