Zabowska's Blog

November 16, 2009

Having Faith in Your Writing is Similar to Having Faith

Filed under: Uncategorized — zabowska @ 12:04 am

       If you write a book, you are going to be monk-like sequestered, but
       the comparison goes deeper than just the physicality the two
       endeavours share. Faith means not worrying. That is what can be
       called a  fearless, focussed writer. If you write, at some point, you
       give yourself over to the process. You let the book write you.
       I know this sounds like you are writing unintentionally.  But that is
       not necessarily the case. When you write a book, the book will take
       on a life of its own. And that is very natural. It is the way good
       writing is gone and must be done. If you write any other way, the
       book you write will appear forced and inauthentic.
       When you set out to write a book, your practising the exact same
       habits of mind and spirit that the deeply devout practice. Writing is
       a daily practise. When you’re a person of faith, you’re always that
       faith, not just when you go to the mosque or synagogue or temple or
       church. You might behave in unfaithful ways: you will surely slip up.
       Most religions are designed to help us understand human nature
       better. And the point of religion is to help us become better
       individuals. This is exactly what a daily writing life creates in you. It
       makes you be a better person.
       Like writers, people of faith focus on process, not results. Of course,
       you`re going to miss writing days. Of course, you`re going to
       experience the temptation of other book projects. You will probably
       not finish your 100th book. However, you can accomplish something
       worthwhile when you write.
       When you write, you believe in something that no one else can see.
       You spend lots of time committed to a project for which there are no
       assurances, and no guarantees. Being a writer subjects you to the
       same doubts, the same unpopularity, the same nagging questions
       that believers struggle with. Writing is communing with the unseen.
       Not everyone will understand why a normal, intelligent, educated,
       seemingly balanced person would devote her energy to something
       that can`t be proven: i.e., your writing success. A novel-in-progress
       may not exist for a long, long time. But you believe in it anyway.
       And, even if you forget to believe in it, even if you doubt it, it is still
       there to greet you each and every day.


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