3 Reasons You Should Ignore Writers and Do Your Own Thing
Your solution to writing easier than you think.
You may have seen writers complain about their low statistics. Well, I say you need to ignore them. Other writers may have lower statistics but does that mean you do as well?
This past year, I put my head down and basically did my own thing. I left Quora about a year ago and put everything into writing on Medium. A few months after that I turned it up a notch and gave writing every day a try. Since June 1, I have written at least one article a day and a few times I squeezed in a second article.
All of my older articles are keeping new and old visitors checking out my articles. The past two days I didn’t publish a single article and my views and reads still held up with the days that I did publish an article.
When you write a lot, your older articles will pop up on someone’s reading list either through Medium or social media. Even though I did not publish a new article, I was still marketing my older articles on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
I could have listened to what writers were saying about their stats going down but I paid no attention to that. Personally, I haven’t given this platform as much time as I did a month ago. I picked up a few other writing gigs which takes up my time. Somewhere in my day, I find time to write an article.
Then I will wait for a publication to publish the article. This is why I didn’t publish anything the last two days. I don’t have time to wait for my article to publish since I am writing my next article. You need to be the same way.
After writing, you’ll learn the rhythm of publications. I actually withdrew an article the other day since the publication hadn’t published any writer’s work in weeks. I quietly withdrew my article and shared it with another publication. Then I took myself off as a writer with the other publisher. I don’t have time to wait for others to publish my work.
As a writer, no one tells you when to write or who to write for. Unless you work for a company, you’re an independent writer who can do whatever you like.
As a writer, these are three tips you should follow:
1. Run your own race.
2. You are your own literary agent.
3. Treat your writing like a real job.
Let me go into more details on these tips.
1. Run your own race.
“You were born to run. Maybe not that fast, maybe not that far, maybe not as efficiently as others. But to get up and move, to fire up that entire energy-producing, oxygen-delivering, bone-strengthening process we call running.”
— Florence Griffith Joyner, Olympic sprinter
You can run a short race like a sprint, or you can run a long race like a marathon. It all depends on your goals. You can write for fun, so there is not a lot of pressure on yourself. Or you can get serious and eventually turn your writing into a full-time job.
No one is going to tell you what to do but you.
- You are the master of your future.
- You control your destiny.
- You can tell your boss that you want to quit. Surprisingly, the boss is also you.
A year ago, writing on Medium was my second writing job after writing for Quora. I was looking for a way to spend my time.
What turned into a little side gig, has resulted in multiple job offers a year later. I already started working for an investment company and today was offered a job writing for a military organization. Then you may have seen my articles about writing for News Break.
As I previously mentioned, “you are the master of your future.”
You control how far your writing takes you. To do well as a writer, you have to show up and put the work in. This may mean a little or a lot of time for you depending on how fast you are typing.
2. You are your own literary agent.
“They (Literary agents) know what the editors are looking for, and they’re experts at sending your submissions to the right people.” Writer’s Relief
As a writer, you are your own manager, editor, publisher, marketer, and writer. This is a lot for one person, but if you manage your time, you can do it all and still have some free time left over.
Do you know what the secret is?
You have to manage your time.
Time is something you have and use every single day. Once you use your time, you can never get it back.
You have to plan your time around your writing. This could be in the morning before you go to work, a few minutes during lunch, in the evening after work, or you do all your writing on the weekend.
There are 168 hours in a week.
Even if you take out the eight hours you work (40 hours/week) and eight hours a day for sleep (56 hours/week), that still leaves you with 72 hours. That is a lot of time for you to write, edit and market your work.
You have, more or less, time available but you do have free time somewhere in your day.
What you do in your free time, is on you.
I have a wife and two kids so I know managing time is hard. You have to work around their schedule as well.
You have to block out time in your schedule so you can write.
As I mentioned earlier, “you control your destiny”. As long as you have the ability to write, nothing is preventing you from writing.
3. Treat your writing like a business.
Any man who keeps working is not a failure. He may not be a great writer, but if he applies the old-fashioned virtues of hard, constant labor, he’ll eventually make some kind of career for himself as a writer. — Ray Bradbury
If you want to do well as a writer, you have to treat it like a business.
Businesses come and go every year. Too many times, new businesses don’t make it in the market. They have a high failure rate.
The Bureau of Labor reports 20 percent of small businesses fail every year. That means one out of five new businesses fail each year.
As a writer, it’s the same way. You will either be successful or you won’t be successful.
You have to figure out how to write for the platform you’re with. As a writer, you need to understand what your audience likes and doesn’t like.
As long as you can build your fans, you’ll continue to grow as a writer. Your fans will challenge you to give them more.
Some of you will fail as a writer.
Whatever reason that prevents you from succeeding as a writer will show up. You can blame the platform you’re writing on, the changes to the algorithm, the lack of time, or whatever it may be.
You can either complain about things that you have no control over or you can focus and treat your writing like a business.
Look at what you’re doing as a writer.
- Identify your strengths and weaknesses?
- What do you need to improve?
- What can you do better?
You may not be used to analyzing yourself, but to be a better writer, you need to look at your strengths and weaknesses. Then your personal habits could be hurting you.
You need to look at what you’re doing and not doing.
Life is short.
You have to motivate yourself to take your writing up a level or two. Push yourself harder than you did last year.
As I mentioned, you have the time. Maybe you’re wasting time somewhere doing something that takes away from your time that you can use as a writer.
You can’t complain about things you have no control over. But you can complain about things you personally are doing and not doing.
To get better, you have to critique yourself. You can’t critique the platform you write for. You can complain all you want but complaining gets you nowhere.
Instead of complaining, use the time to write. Improve yourself to be a better writer.
Finish the year stronger.
Time is counting down. Don’t waste your year. Don’t waste your time.
Writer and Investor