I didn’t get serious about writing until I started writing for The Christian Post and Stand Firm Magazine. I didn’t get serious because I was writing for them. I got serious because I really wanted to write.

Let me explain.

I called myself a writer but I didn’t write like one. I called myself a writer because of things I wrote in the past — as if that defined me. I was wrong. My idea of what it means to be a writer was completely misleading.

When I was twelve-years-old, I discovered my love for writing. I found myself wanting to read more and then write stories like the ones I read. (Side notewriters are readers!) I wrote a lot in old notebooks and even on an old typewriter. I wrote four books before I was twenty-three all of which are no longer in print due to me choosing not to renew their contracts. Yes, I published some books but the quality wasn’t good. As a writer I began to realize that if my work was going to be “out there” with my name attached to it I wanted it to be done well. Maybe not the best writing in the world but good writing nonetheless.

For years I called myself a writer because of projects I wrote in the past. I tried to write but always found myself distracted or coming up with reasons why I can’t or don’t have time. After being given the opportunity to write for The Christian Post and LifeWay and reading some of the blogs mentioned at the bottom of this post, I began to realize that writing requires work. It requires sacrifice. But if you are a writer that sacrifice…the work…is not burdensome. It’s enjoyable!

When I believed about myself the following statement everything changed:

I am a writer because I write not because I wrote.

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When I realized I was calling myself a writer based on what I wrote in the past things began to change. I began to blog more. Start more books. But that became a problem. How? Well, I started a lot of blog posts and books but never finished them. I was a starter but not a finisher. Can you relate? Chances are, many of you can. And that’s okay! The good thing is you don’t have to be like me and wait years to really begin to write and call yourself a writer!

Maybe you don’t struggle with finishing what you start like me. Maybe you wrestle with self doubt, fear, or a combination of a lot of things. Either way, whatever it is believe this about yourself if you are a writer: I’m a writer because I write. There is no such thing as a true writer who doesn’t write. You can’t be what you aren’t willing to do. You can’t call yourself a doctor without first going through the necessary schooling and training to practice medicine. The same is true with the craft of writing. To write you must be a writer and to be a writer you must write.

If you’re a writer you should follow the bloggers mentioned below. Why? Not because I recommend them but because they give great tips on learning to write well. Your writing will only get better if you are always willing to learn.

A true writer never stops learning. That took me years to learn, because I can be somewhat stubborn! Don’t be like me. Be willing to learn and take the advice of those who have been writing a long time. Not all advice is good advice. You’ll have to make that call. But I can’t stress enough: Be a constant learner!

Okay, here are the bloggers I would make sure to subscribe to and follow on social media:

They are not in any specific order or ranking.

Who should I add to the list? Comment below and I’ll be sure to update this post as needed.

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