Are You a Pond or River Writer?

Are you a river or a pond with your writing? Do you let what you have to say flow out of you or do you keep it gathering inside of you?

A river writer lets what they have to say flow out. A pond writer keeps it to themselves.

I have a confession to make. For many years I was a pond instead of a river. I  gathered all this wonderful knowledge, wisdom and insight and would not get around to writing about it.

Fears and busyness held me back. Fears and questions bombarded my mind. Will other people be critical of my writing? Will I write it right or write it perfectly enough? What if no one even bothered to read it? How can I fit writing into my busy schedule? What will I have to give up to take time to write?

I gathered my stories and thoughts into the pond. The only problem is that it wasn’t flowing out of me to anyone who could benefit from it. When  it gathered in the pond, the writing stagnated. I lost the freshness of the ideas and they became stale.

In the last few years, I’ve started pouring out more. Yet I’ve still held back out of fear of not writing perfectly. 

Well, I’m making a decision as of now. I’m not going to let those fears stop me anymore. I’m going to start becoming more of a river writer instead of a pond writer.

I self edit my writing carefully and believe in doing all you can to write well. However, the flip side of that is perfectionism which can keep you from getting out a good message which can help others.

If I make writing mistakes, let me know and I’ll correct them but I’m not going to let fear of mistakes hinder me.

How about you? Are you going to jump in the river with me? Are you afraid? Here’s 5 strategies to overcome those fears.

5 Tips to Overcome Your Fears of River Writing

1. Begin now. Whatever level of skill you’re at in your writing, start there. Start giving to others with your writing.

Zina, one of my students from my writing course started a blog to encourage those with handicaps.  At one point, Zina expressed concern that her writing wasn’t as polished as she would like. I wrote her, “Zina, you’re having a huge impact encouraging others at the skill level you’re at so keep writing!”

Last year, Zina had 12,000 views on her blog. What if she’d let her fears stop her? So many people would have missed out.

2. Understand the principle of increase. The more you use something the more it will increase. You understand this in exercising. The more you exercise, the stronger you get. You go from strength to strength. The same is true in writing, you go from skill level to skill level. The more you write, the more you learn about how to write, the more you’ll grow as a writer.

 3. Let it flow. Sit down and simply start writing. Don’t worry about whether or not you do it right. Turn off the critical side of you and let it come out. Tap into your right brain instead of your left brain and go for it. You can correct it later but for now, let it go.

4. Grow little by little. Take time to add to your writing knowledge. If you want to learn how to write or write better, take the “How to Write for Fun and Profit” writing course.

If you’ve taken the course, pull it out and review it or read another book on writing. Implement writing tips and continue to learn how to write or improve your writing.

5.  Take responsibility. You have a river inside of you but it’s your responsibility to let it flow out to others. Maybe you’re busy. Most people are. That’s where the 15 minute concept came to be. Don’t wait until you have a lot of time or another season of your life. Grab that pen and take advantage of the small increments of time you have now. Let the river flow, 15 minutes at a time.

People out there need to hear what you have to say. Even if it’s an audience of one, they need what you have to give.

So, jump in the river and let it flow. Instead of a pond writer, be a river writer. Refresh others and you’ll be refreshed.

Go write now.

Share the Gift of Writing!

How about you? What fears hold you back? How do you feel when you’re in a pond instead of a river? What is your experience? Share with us in the comments below.

Image of girls by Admar at http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/