When I entered college, and most especially when I entered the English major, I had the itch to write. I wanted to write everything. Novels, short stories, blog posts, how-to books, self-help books, news stories… if it could be written, I wanted to do it. Most of these haven’t happened (yet), but it didn’t take me long to realize a few simple things:
I needed to practice, and I needed to write. A lot. And if I ever wanted to be published in any significant way, I needed to work to be published however I could be first in small scales.
And so that’s what I did. And I realized the opportunities were everywhere. I just had to be eager, enthusiastic, and courageous about it.
My path for writing has led me to read at a Writer’s Showcase in downtown Scranton, to be published in a zine with a local publishing company, and to be published consistently through the MU English Dept blog that you are currently reading and at The Wood Word through my college experience.
I realized shortly after starting any of these projects that my writing assignments in class and the writing prompts I gave myself were not only important but necessary. I also realized that writing in a vacuum was not something for me. With art like fictional writing, no one way is the right way, but writing for myself was not my way to success.
I wanted feedback. I needed motivation to meet deadlines. And I needed resume builders.
If you too are an avid writer and wish to be published, find what works for you. Figure out your routine. See how you best can practice. But do that as often as you can. If you want to be published, simply ask around. One of your professors or friends probably knows somewhere you can be published. Do that, and do that as often as you can as well. If there’s anything I know about writing and publications, it’s if you can do it frequently, do it. You’ll only be better for it.
These same principles can apply to anything in life. It is a matter of dedication and perseverance. The more you put in, the more you get out. The more you write for publishers, the more work you get out into the world.
Sure, you can write a lot on your own with today’s rise of blogs, but the chance to learn from mentors is without equal. If you are fortunate to find a great mentor, latch on.
So write. A lot. Or do what you love. A lot. Sharpen your talents, and if someone along the way thinks you’ve got a good thing going, prove them right.
Contact the writer: firstname.lastname@example.org