Since I became a writer 40 years ago, I’ve had to dish out a lot more money than I’ve taken in, what with postage, paper, print cartridges, paying for editors, publicity and travel expenses. I would be a millionaire today if I made a dollar for every hour I’ve spent writing my novels, short stories, essays and poems. But I’m still happy I chose to be a writer. I feel like the great New York Yankee first baseman, Lou Gehrig, who said to an overflow crowd at Yankee Stadium on the day of his retirement in 1939, “Today I consider myself the luckiest man on the face of the earth.”
Although I write about writing, I refuse to tell people how to write or what to write. All I can do is try to inspire them to write and give them a picture of what the writing process is all about.
“Tell me,” you might ask, “what is the writing process all about?”
The process, simply stated, is: If you know what you want to write, write it. If you have a desire to write but don’t know what to say, then write anything that comes to mind without stopping. Do it for five, ten, thirty minutes or an hour.
As for me, I love to write when I don’t know what to write. I feel freer than a bird when that happens. I can soar, glide, swoop, dive, imagine, feel, think, go back in time, peer into the future or vent my anger. No one is telling me what to do. I’m free. I’m a writer. That’s why I consider myself the luckiest writer on the face of the earth.
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