The #1 Reason That Prevents Me From Becoming An Author

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside of you.” – Maya Angelou
I’ve had this story inside of me for less than a year. This year my goal is to pen it down. I am sure the characters cannot wait to get out of my head.
One of my goals this year is to start with my fiction book. Another goal is to at least read five books this year.
I am reading more things aligned to what I want to achieve. On Monday 16 January 2017, I came across Karthik Pasupathy’s article “5 Things That Prevent Young Aspirants from Becoming Writers”.
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THE REASONS WE DON’T BECOME WRITERS
Pasupathy wrote on The Writing Cooperative that writers do not interact. “Aspirants (aspiring authors) don’t discuss about writing. They keep things to themselves. They’re too afraid to step forward and discuss ideas.
“Brainstorming plays an important role when comes to writing. When people with contrasting opinions discuss about a topic, it creates new connections in our brain,” he explains. “This allows a writer to look at an issue from several perspectives.”
Other mistakes that aspiring authors do “they don’t read” nor “they do not write,” says Pasupathy.
I should talk to fellow writers about my process, I thought. I decided to act on this. After emailing someone close to me my story idea, I got a few gems from this fellow writer.
LESSONS LEARNT
I needed to hear the following and she said it: “You know you can do this; the story is already in you.”
The challenging part of writing a story is actually starting. Although I have small parts of the story in my head, I think: what if I don’t have more meat for my story?
Meaning: what if the story doesn’t get interesting as the first part?
“You know you can do this; the story is already in you.”
I am certain this means: Just start, the rest will come.
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Lastly, I will share with the one other gem I got from this person: “Try to write when you have lots of emotion in you, whether good or bad.”
It’s not like I haven’t written a story before – I am a journalist by profession and I have also had fiction short stories published.
Let’s not agonise I tell myself; just start with it.
If you are an author or have struggled to start with something you’re passionate about, let me know what motivated you to do the next step.
Enjoy the rest of your week!

Life lessons 101: my experiences before I reached 30

It’s Cassarica Nadas’ birthday. She is the chief executive officer of The Blog Tag community and her site Amazeblog. This lady is my homie and part of my Mastermind Group – we share ideas and experiences relating to our blogs. Hip hip HOORAY honey!

So in light of your birthday I thought of sharing some lessons I have learnt in my 29 years on earth.

I love how talk show host Oprah Winfrey says that author Maya Angelou taught her this:

“When you know better, you do better.” This means, if you mature then you will make better decisions. Yessss!

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The movie “Confessions of a Shopaholic” is one of my favourites to watch. Besides the fact that it taught me I should wear more bright [sometimes neon] and brave colours like pink, I loved how the parents of this shopaholic did the following:
After finding out their daughter is in huge debt, the parents sold their huge car that they wanted to tour with. Before talking to their daughter about financially helping her out, the mom holds out a book “Ways to financially equip your child” to the dad and asks if it’s too late. The dad says “No, it’s never too late.”

Lesson: It’s never too late to do anything.

Another favourite romantic comedy is “John Tucker Must Die”. So John has a lot of girlfriends in his school, because he is Mister Popular. The girls find out about each other and try to trick John. The problem is whenever something goes wrong, John uses it to his advantage JUST BECAUSE HE CAN. He gets embarrassed, but he owns the embarrassment and whatever he does, becomes a trend.
For instance, the girl he likes tells him to wear a girl’s thong (thin panty) and boys in the school sees him wearing this.
Because he owns the good and the bad (in this instance the embarrassment), the other boys in school start wearing panties (that’s showing) too.

Lesson: No matter what bad happens, own it. Use it to your advantage.

Okay enough movie lessons 🙂

My mother taught me that I shouldn’t buy on credit. I did eventually after getting married. Shame on me. But I have learned to stay away from credit of retail and food. Though it helps to buy on credit when you are broke, try to stay away from buying on credit. Los die gedagte (leave those thoughts) if you can do without it (buying on credit I mean).

Another thing I learned: if you do buy on credit, try to pay a month’s installment ahead. It helps to pay off the debt quicker.

To avoid a bad credit record – if you cannot seem to pay your debt, pay a little money on the debt every month. No matter how small the amount is.

Moving away from debt…

Before renting at a place, make sure that the owner is not going to revamp his house. I thought it was okay to live at a cottage where the owner was renovating her house. BIG MISTAKE!
There were too much dust, noise, and no parking for my car during the day.

Always read through a contract and if you don’t understand, ask questions. I almost paid three months rent in advance for a new place – this is if I had not asked about it.

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LIFE LESSONS

It’s okay if you lose friends – some people are there only for a season in your life (or their life). Even if you were besties and that person suddenly gives up on you – just let it be.

Hard work pays off. When I started working as a junior – or if I am new in a job, I try to be at work an hour earlier so that I can prep for the day, hunt for stories, et cetera. It helps. Eventually I got better and did things in less time.

It’s okay if your interests change. I love journalism, but that does not mean I will do this forever. My father worked at a railway company, thereafter he became an entrepreneur, after that he worked as an administrator at a school, and now he is a professional teacher. I also have a friend who was a teacher for 20 years and she recently started doing her articles for lawyer. She is now a Legal Aid lawyer.

Give – and/ or lend without expecting it back. Even if people tell you they’ll pay you back, don’t wait for that payback. Write it off. If you do wait for it and they don’t pay you back, you will scar relationships.

It’s okay to say “no”.

Well, that is some of the lessons I have learned. I hope you can learn from some of my mistakes.

As part of Sam Posselt‘s 7-Day #rsabizblogs Challenge, I will leave you Oprah’s lesson learnt:

What life lessons would you give someone younger than yourself? Thank you for reading!