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Everyone has a Story to Tell and an Experience to Share!

Let’s Start Writing
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It's never too late to become a writer, write anything!

“Start writing, no matter what. The water does not flow until the faucet is turned on.”

                                                                                                                  — Louis L’Amour

A 1000 words piece of writing begins with one word. While it may not lead you to the conclusion, but this first word can lead you to an idea, which becomes a paragraph, which becomes an article ...

JK Rowling started with an idea that came to her while delayed on a train travelling from Manchester to London King's Cross in 1990, an idea she refused to give up. And so was born Harry Potter, a story in 7 volumes! The rest is history.

To become a successful writer you need to keep this five key points in mind.

1. Stop making excuses and just "Write"

You must have decided to write a week, a month or years back. You feel guilty about not doing it, you get anxious and then a plethora of excuses come to mind relieving you of your obligations. Some of the top excuses are -

"There are too many people who are already writing"

Yes, it's true that there are lot of people writing on the same topic but it's your style that sets you apart from others.

"I do not know how to write"

It not that talent falls from the sky and has landed away from your cradle. No one is born a writer. Writing is learned by writing. It's as simple as that.

"I do not have time to write"

C'mmon...! don't make excuses. It really can fit into your busy schedule

To become a great you have to write every day. Not necessarily much, but the idea is that it is important to be regular. For aspiring writers 200 words a day will do. Whether you are looking for a full time creative writing career or you have a passion to write a book. Consistency and patience is the most important virtues of a good writer.

2. When you can not write…just think!

Tonight, you're in front of your screen, the words struggle to come and when they come, it's bad enough.

Tip: stop writing for tonight!

That doesn’t mean that you don’t have to do anything and relax in front of the television in an armchair.

Certainly not, you can do something else, among other things, think. Review your ideas. Maybe the idea you're working on is just not good enough. Besides, all the ideas you had before you started in this write-up are not necessarily good to put in your story. Which does not mean that they are bad, but they may not have their place here. If you compare to a recipe, it is not because we will put all the spices that the dish will be better, on the contrary.

3. Set your writing goals

To set your goals, use the SMART method:

Specific: Your writing goals must be clear. The more concrete they are, the more likely you are to reach them. Feel free to divide a goal into sub objectives. The more specific your writing goals are, the better.

Measurable: You need to be able to clearly measure your progress and know when your goal is achieved. This measurement of your progress must be objective.

Attainable: Of course, your writing goal should please you. Otherwise you will not have the motivation to succeed.

Relevant: A good goal is a realistic goal. Certainly, to motivate you, the objective must be sufficiently ambitious. But if it is not possible, then you will lose your energy and especially your motivation.

Time-bound: Remember to always set limits to your writing goal. Limits in content, but also in time.

Always define a duration, a deadline and steps. If your goal is too long to reach in one step, you can always cut it into sub objectives that will be achieved gradually. This will keep you motivated and satisfied with each successful sub-goal.

4. Choose the right platform to write

Often underestimated, choosing the right platform to write and publish is probably the most important choice you'll have to make. Indeed, all your writing efforts will be linked to this decision. And most of your hard-work will be in vain if you fail to choose the right platform for publishing. To become a successful writer, the right choice of publishing platform is a must.

Vigyaa.com is an online self-publishing platform where you can share your thoughts, your stories, and your expertise with the World by publishing articles instantly.

Just click the link below and publish your content in just a few seconds.

Last but not the least,

5. Stop constantly reviewing what you have written

Are you one of those perfectionist writers who continually re-read what they have written? Let me tell you, you'll have plenty of time to read your writing again. The replay stage is even fundamental. And you will do it with a little distance when your write-up is completely written.

The worst thing is that by rereading each time, you slow down unnecessarily and lose motivation because work is slower. Write without checking your mistakes, you will have plenty of time to reread.

Start your writing journey today. Happy Writing!

Content Research and Acquisition Specialist


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Everything big starts small. Everything on earth today was born out of someone’s small idea who strongly believed they will succeed in developing it.

The airplane was once an idea, the microwave, and the cellular phone. The great life of any successful person is wrapped up around a definite purpose which usually starts as a small idea. Success comes from working on small beginnings with faith and perseverance.

Success involves focus, hard work, determination, pushing beyond your comfort zone and hope in life. Success in small things gives you hope for big things. I like taking selfies. I am a selfie author and speaker. That’s part of my brand. Before I take a selfie, I tell the person or group of people to smile and right away they smile. I use the power of “selfies” to plant beautiful smiles on people’s faces, ignite friendship, promote unity, enhance togetherness and create a sense of cooperation amongst all racial divides. As small as the idea seems, it goes the extra miles of putting beautiful smiles on people’s faces at a time lots of people rarely smile. It started small and has developed into a powerful movement. Now everyone I meet who knows me wants to take a selfie photo.

Focusing on a goal is a great mind development action. But to make that goal realizable you must start with appreciating and celebrating the small things that gets you to the goal. Focusing on a goal creates momentum that propels you to constantly take actions. Every big thing started small. Life’s success is the accumulation of tireless small efforts matched with determination, focus and hope. I don’t believe in the get-rich-quick syndrome. I believe in hard work and using quality productive time to achieve my goals.

When you witness your small acts developing into big things, you feel happy; you build courage, move faster and become more hopeful. When you inject courage into your life, you develop a powerful force that pushes you through fear, and you build confidence to take on any challenge.

Challenges will come, no doubt. Your hope in life will be shaken, that’s okay but you’ll survive it. It’s sad that most people see setbacks as failure. Rather than picking themselves up and forging ahead, they freeze and lose hope. They stop taking actions. That’s totally wrong and a disservice to your personality. I don’t believe in failure. Failure is a simple way that the universe tells us that we have not found the right way to do it. It’s a way it tells us to make new tactical changes on the next plan. Never allow any setback to kill your hope in life. If you do, you are doomed.

Understand this, if you have never had any failures in life, then you are not thinking big. It means you are not taking risks. It means you take the easy route, you do the simple things and you are constantly playing safe.

Most successful people worldwide started their careers with nothing, some with little or no experience. Most have no skills at all, but they started, worked hard, believed in themselves, sometimes failed but never gave up. They constantly put their best foot forward to reach their goals. Why did they succeed? They succeeded because they strongly believed in their power of creativity even with the smallest experience and resources they had at the time.

Failures teach lessons and when we learn, we shake off the disappointments and move right up to the next plan. We learn from mistakes. You don’t learn to play soccer by watching a soccer game. No matter how long you watch the game, you will never learn how to play soccer. The learning process starts once you get into the field of play and practice, kicking the ball, making passes, committing fouls, scoring goals and learning as you go. That’s how you develop skills and learn the rules of the game. The same applies to life. Every dream you think of, feel and imagine and work on can be actualized. So long as it’s something you really want, there is a potential for its actualization if you work on it. Go out there and Live Your Dream.

I’m officially coming out of the closet! Here goes. I, Barry Vissell, besides being a counselor, author, doctor, and workshop leader, am also a musician!

There, that wasn’t so hard.

So what makes me hesitate to announce this beautiful, musical part of me? It’s quite simple: I don’t feel good enough. Even though many people love my singing voice, and I really enjoy singing, there is still a part of me that compares my voice to what I judge as better voices.

I accompany myself on the harmonium, an East Indian keyboard instrument that sounds a bit like an accordion. Again, a part of me compares my playing to more accomplished keyboard artists, even though many people love the simple way I play.

And then there are the songs I write. Nothing fancy. Just what I consider heart-felt messages of love and spirituality. And yes again, people love my songs. And the most important person who is my greatest fan is Joyce. So why is there still a part of me that compares my songs to the elaborate and polished songs of “professional” musicians?

It’s all about not feeling good enough. I have a gift to give, but it’s far from perfect. So I hesitate to give it.

Joyce and I have written eight books and are working on two more. Are they perfect? Absolutely not! Are we polished and professional writers? No. Did we take even one writing course? Again, no. I’ll never forget trying to publish our first book, The Shared Heart. We got rejected by about thirty publishers. Obviously, the message was that our book was not good enough. We felt like giving up. Someone suggested self-publishing. We bought Dan Poynter’s Self-Publishing Manual. Aside from the great technical advice in that book, two quotes really helped us. The first compared commercial publishers to birthing a child and then having someone else raise it. And the second went something like this: “There are three kinds of people in this world. There are those who make things happen, those who watch things happen, and the third who wonder what happened.”

Those two quotes motivated us to self-publish The Shared Heart in 1984, to give our gift and not be stopped by feelings of not good enough. Still, we had a moment of panic when we sent the first batch of books to reviewers. Then a few days of fear as we waited for the reactions. Finally, a small padded envelope arrived at our mailbox. Inside was a cassette tape, which we hesitatingly inserted into a player. We had no idea what to expect. After a few moments of tense silence, during which both of us were holding our breath, there was the sound of a man crying. Mystified, we listened intently as the crying continued for several minutes. Then the crying stopped and he said, “This is the most beautiful book I have ever read,” and then he began crying again.

To this day, that first response to our first book has been the most important validation of our writing. We couldn’t have gotten any better feedback. The Shared Heart went on to become a best seller, inspiring and helping so many people. And to think, we almost didn’t give this gift to the world because we felt it wasn’t good enough.

One more personal example. Although, after medical school, I primarily studied psychiatry and psychotherapy, I still worked many years as a medical doctor. I saw patients at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Santa Clara, then at the Santa Cruz County Health Center. I kept receiving inner guidance for a deeper gift I wanted to give, to work with people’s souls instead of their bodies. On one of our spiritual pilgrimages to Mount Shasta, my dissatisfaction with my medical job became unbearable and, when I returned home, I quit my job. I felt so happy and relieved, although a bit worried about making enough money to support our growing family.

The physician in charge of the Santa Cruz County Health Center told me he needed a doctor to be the director of the Watsonville Health Center. He offered me a raise in salary, and the freedom to run the clinic any way I chose. I fell for the bait. I took the job, excited about the possibility of having meaningful staff meetings. Watsonville, however, although part of Santa Cruz County, was, especially in the early 1980’s, practically like being in Mexico. The clinic staff was much more interested in preparing tamales than sharing their feelings. I lasted two years before burning out once more and then quitting.

I felt ready to focus all my energy on the real gift I came to earth to give, my purpose in life, working with individuals, couples and groups on a soul-to-soul level, rather than just their bodies.

But yet again, I yielded to temptation. Out of the blue, Jerry, the medical director of the University of California at Santa Cruz, offered me a job in the health center taking care of the college students. If I could have picked the best medical doctor job, it would have been that one. I accepted. I worked there for several years. But alas, it was still medicine, and I was still not living my purpose. The benefits were great. The salary was great. But I became more and more unhappy.

Then came divine intervention! Jerry called me into his office. We had a great relationship. He said, “Barry, I’m going to free you up to do the work you really want to do. I’m letting you go.” Then he added sadly, “I wish there was someone who could do the same for me. I would love to pursue a career in music, rather than directing this health center. But I don’t seem to have the courage to fire myself.”

Jerry and I hugged and shared some tears. I left knowing I would never again work in the medical field. Together with Joyce, we began in earnest to share our deeper gifts with the world, the work we still do today.

About a month later, I was notified that Jerry had a massive heart attack and was found dead in his office. His death has always served as a reminder of how vitally important it is to pursue your dreams, to go for your higher purpose, and give your gifts to life, no matter how imperfect they may be, or how inadequate you may feel.

I’d like to quote part of one of my recent songs:

“Why am I here?

What gift can I give?

Can my path be clear,

Guiding how I live?

Why am I here?

Is there more than strife?

I’ll move beyond fear,

To a fulfilling life.”

Here are a few opportunities to bring more love and growth into your life, at the following longer events led by Barry and Joyce Vissell:

Jul 21-26, 2019 — Shared Heart Summer Retreat at Breitenbush Hot Springs, OR

Sep 24-30, 2019 — Assisi Retreat, Italy

Jun 7-14, 2020 — Shared Heart Alaska Cruise

Joyce & Barry Vissell, a nurse/therapist and psychiatrist couple since 1964, are counselors near Santa Cruz, CA, who are widely regarded as among the world's top experts on conscious relationship and personal growth. They are the authors of eight books, including two new books, To Really Love a Woman and To Really Love a Man.

Call 831-684-2299 for further information on counseling sessions by phone or in person, their books, recordings or their schedule of talks and workshops. Visit their web site at SharedHeart.org for their free monthly e-heartletter, their updated schedule, and inspiring past articles on many topics about relationship and living from the heart.

“There is a gift behind each disappointment and sadness.” These are words my mother spoke to me countless times growing up. I have found that sometimes the gift comes quite quickly and, at other times, the gift comes slowly, perhaps years later. But we need to trust that a gift will come. This trusting can be difficult though, especially when it appears over time that no gift is coming.

Recently, I had the experience of a gift coming quite quickly. Barry and I work at Esalen Institute once a year giving a couple’s retreat. We love this Big Sur ocean-side retreat center dearly. To me, there is no more beautiful place on the earth. Every once in a while we are able to receive a guest pass, which is a super treat. We always make sure to schedule a massage as well while we are there.

Barry was giving a men’s retreat in our home and I needed to find a place to go for the Saturday of the retreat. I was allowed a guest pass to Esalen, which is a beautiful but very curvy drive along the Big Sur coast. Though the drive is so spectacular, I was not fond of driving it by myself. But I really needed a massage and a place to be for the day so I drove by myself.

I called several weeks before, and scheduled and paid for my massage. I was sent receipts which I printed out and took with me. I said good-by to Barry and the men very early in the morning and took off for Esalen. Esalen suggests that each person who is getting a massage soak in the hot springs for a half hour before. I arrived early and waited in the hot springs with a young woman. I only knew the name of the person who was to massage me, so I prayed that this person could be used as an instrument of healing.

At the appointed time, a male massage practitioner approached the tubs. For some odd reason, I hoped it was not the person massaging me. He called the young woman. Other practitioners came and got their clients. I was left alone. Finally a man kept calling a name over and over. Obviously his client was not there yet. I went up to that man, asked about my massage, and gave him the name that was on the receipt. He told me that practitioner had just come and called the young woman who was in the tub with me. He left to check the schedule and quickly came back to me announcing that I was not on the schedule.

“This is a mistake,” I spoke up. “I have receipts.” He called the office for me right before his client showed up. The man at the office apologized profusely and said there wasn’t anything that could be done. It was a mistake and they could refund my money. “But I drove all the way here from Santa Cruz for this massage and I really need this,” and I felt like I might start crying. “I am sorry,” he said. “There is nothing I can do.”

He was about to end the call when he said, “Oh, wait a minute.” At that moment, the head of massage at Esalen happened to walk by on the way to her office and overheard his conversation with me. She told him it was not right and that she would come right over and give the massage.

So I happened to get the very best person at Esalen who had keys to the very best location to have a massage there. And she shared with me that before she gives a massage, she always asks that her hands be used at instruments of healing, just what I had been praying for. And the massage was indeed heavenly. That amazing gift came quite quickly!!!

But other gifts come slowly. When I was almost forty years old, we had a baby girl that died before birth. This was devastating for me. My parents were visiting at the time and my mother said to me, “I know this is hard because I had twins that also died shortly after birth. I know the heartache, but there will be a gift for you that will bless your life. Every day thank God in advance for the beautiful gift that is being prepared for you.” My pain was so great that I felt for sure this time my mother was wrong. How could any gift come from this sorrow? I totally closed my heart and mind to any possibility of having another child. We already had our two darling daughters and that would be enough. I was going to forget my dream of having three children as I was too fearful of the same thing happening again. Barry agreed and we were very careful to not get pregnant.

But gifts do come, and I finally became pregnant even though we were being as careful as could be. Three years after our baby Anjel died, I gave birth to a ten pound baby boy. John-Nuri brought a burst of light and love into our lives, and he continues to do so. My mother was right after all. The gift did come and I love him so much.

Sometimes the gift comes in the form of more compassion or understanding or patience. Sometimes, because a person had to go through a very difficult challenge, they are then able to help another. And sometimes the gift that comes from pain is the gift of a more open heart or a deepening of spirituality. Look for the gift, and surely it will come, bringing meaning to the hardships, sorrows, and disappointments of life.

Here are a few opportunities to bring more love and growth into your life, at the following longer events led by Barry and Joyce Vissell:

Jul 21-26, 2019 — Shared Heart Summer Retreat at Breitenbush Hot Springs, OR

Sep 24-30, 2019 — Assisi Retreat, Italy

Jun 7-14, 2020 — Shared Heart Alaska Cruise

Joyce & Barry Vissell, a nurse/therapist and psychiatrist couple since 1964, are counselors near Santa Cruz, CA, who are widely regarded as among the world's top experts on conscious relationship and personal growth. They are the authors of eight books, including two new books, To Really Love a Woman and To Really Love a Man.

Call 831-684-2299 for further information on counseling sessions by phone or in person, their books, recordings or their schedule of talks and workshops. Visit their web site at SharedHeart.org for their free monthly e-heartletter, their updated schedule, and inspiring past articles on many topics about relationship and living from the heart.

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