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Writing is a risk

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Are you willing to take the risk? The risk of writing is revealing yourself, unwrapping the layers of your ideas and sharing them with your readers. Will everyone like or identify with everything you say? Of course not. Don't let this stop you.

“And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.” ― Anaïs Nin

Do you have an idea for a blog or book and have been procrastinating on starting? Why? What is holding you back? Fear of failure? Fear of rejection? Playing it safe and not taking the leap towards a dream keeps you in a holding pattern marked by your inner voice saying “you can't do it.” But guess what? You can do it.

“A ship is safe in harbor, but that's not what ships are for.”
― William G.T. Shedd

agatha christie quote

Get a notepad and Sharpie or fire up your laptop and start a draft of your writing project. Find the resources that you need to get started and in the words of some advertising genius at Nike, just do it!

Sometimes getting started on your writing will get the ball rolling, when you get your fingers moving over the keyboard, your brain might surprise you with some good ideas.

A few things to get you started:

Keep a notebook to jot down ideas when you have them this will help you capture the idea and have a starting off point next time you sit down to write.

Schedule time to write. Plan it into your day.

Turn off the social media! If you have Twitter, Facebook or Google+ open, you won't be writing. Cut out all your distractions. This includes the notifications for social media. Prioritize your time and make your writing time sacred. Tweets and responses can wait until you're done writing. Trust me, they'll still be there waiting.

A few tools that might help you:

Dropbox — easily share your writing with people who are reading your work or helping you edit.

Pinterest — create boards, private or public, to save inspirational pins for your writing. You can pin from almost anywhere on the web.

Toggl — online time keeper to help manage your time.

Evernote — Keeps track of everything you find and want to save across the web. Load the Evernote Chrome app and get organized.

Penultimate — Combine natural handwriting with digital convenience that coordinates with Evernote.

“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.”

― T.S. Eliot

Have you stalled a dream to avoid the risk? What can you do today to kick it off?

Photo credit by nate steiner via Creative Commons, Graphic from Xlibris

Article by Peg Fitzpatrick

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  1. My friend and I actually kicked off our project this weekend!
    I want to check out Penultimate. Maybe it would help me to make better use of Evernote.

    1. Erin F. Awesome! So happy for you, Erin.
      Penultimate looks very cool. I’m a paper and Sharpie writer to start with or jot ideas but I love the way that it looks and saves with Evernote.
      Good luck with your project!

  2. My mentor says “You come to your writing alone.” I think this is why many people procrastinate. All you bring to your writing is the skill you have. That’s one of the things that makes it so deeply personal. It’s just you, seemingly naked. It’s also what makes writing so powerful—for the writer and, hopefully, for the reader.

    1. profkrg Very wise statement from your mentor, Kenna. You’re very lucky to have one. Every time you hit “publish” you are putting yourself out there, even if it’s just a quick post. 

      Very eloquently put “It’s just you, seemingly naked. It’s also what makes writing so powerful—for the writer and, hopefully, for the reader.” Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

  3. Great post and resources. I create a lot of videos on my blog and I feel the same way; always the risk of putting myself “out there”. But I still write, record, and hit publish (very reluctantly most days).

  4. Such a great post and very timely for me. I have pages and pages written on my computer in no particular order – just thoughts as they come. It’s becoming a bit overwhelming, but I know it will be worth it in the end. Thanks for the great words and the great encouragement!

    1. kcourt40 Oohhh that sounds interesting. You need to organize by topic or decide what to do with all your writing. It’s fantastic that you’re taking the time to capture it all. 
      What ARE you going to do with it? 🙂

      1. PegFitzpatrick kcourt40 Thanks for your encouragement. Short story – I’m a birthmother and have been involved in an amazing open adoption experience for the last 25 years. The adoption itself and the relationships with my son’s family have been wonderful. 
        I’ve known I’ve had a story to tell for years, but only in the last year or so have I come to realize that the story is not about “open adoption” (as I originally thought). Rather, it’s about the joy and wonderful healing that comes from overcoming my personal struggles with guilt, shame, fear and self-doubt.. Thanks again for your great words in this post!

  5. Great blog, Peg. This one really resonated with me.
    By nature I’m not really a “writer”. I’ve had to get over a bunch of limiting beliefs about THAT! 
    Three years later, my writing has improved and I’ve pushed myself to write differently and share more about myself. More people connect with me and I love that.
    It’s so easy to share more about me in my office when I’m helping a client. But on the net…well…sometimes pushing that PUBLISH button takes a lot of strength.
    I’m curious, what was it like for you when you first began to write?

    1. Wendy Merron I started blogging and when I sent my first post for a friend to look at, he tweeted it and then it went everywhere. I had a different blogging experience than many people because I had built a solid foundation of social media friends so I think that helped a lot.
      It can be scary to hit publish but I’m not scared anymore. I think I’ve come into a good stride in my writing and it doesn’t take as long anymore. I really love it a lot so I think that fuels it for me. I’m happy to be a writer and passionate about sharing my idea, I hope that comes through when I write.
      I’ll have to go look for your writing now. Thanks for sharing and asking. 🙂

  6. Greetings from Brazil,
    Thank you for this wonderful post. 
    I’ll be starting blogging as soon as I finish a current project. 
    I don´t feel like a writer. On the contrary, by being a technical professional working for IT, most of my professional life was reading things. But now I want to turn this and start writing. 
    The first post is the most difficult one, but after a while, I know things will come up easier ( at least I hope! 🙂 )
    Eduardo Lucas

  7. Hi Peg! I’m finally commenting. I have a tool to add – Concentrate. It will shut down social networks and email and whatever else you want when you click on your designated tasks. And it times you. Completely agree ya gotta shut everything down when you’re writing.

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