As I speak at conferences, I’m often asked what skill writers need most.
“Perseverance!” is my immediate answer.
After all, blog writing aside, going from idea to article publication can take months. Books often need years before the actual birth.
Compared to others, I haven’t written much. I have only 17 books and 500-plus articles to my authoring or co-authoring credit. But while struggling toward writing goals, I’ve cared for a young husband with brain cancer, grieved his death, raised our pre-teen children, switched careers from teaching to editing, made two major moves and tried to be available to family and friends in their crises. Often, I could have given up. But writing isn’t for quitters. I’m not the best writer this world has, either. But what I lack in talent, I make up for in perseverance.
I love telling about my son, Jay, graduating with a friend who planned to write the Great American Novel. Instead, he took an entry level job. When Jay asked about the book, his friend shrugged.
“I’m waiting for the muse.”
Jay looked at him. “Come to my mom’s house some night when she’s on deadline and she’s typing through tears because she’s so tired. Then I’ll show you the muse.”
When Jay reported the scene, I hugged him for his understanding. Yes, the muse lives at my house—and her name is Perseverance.