How To Fall In Love With Writing Again

As artists, writing is part of our career. And you have to get good at it too. You have to write artist statements, appeal for grants, and argue why your art is valid - - all through writing.

But what about those of us who hate writing? In our earlier education we were tortured with writing, (and sometimes still are today) with meaningless papers, writing assessments that would determine how valuable and smart we are, etc. Writing can be discouraging from these experiences, such as when you were in high school and applied to dozens of scholarships. You wrote with all your heart hoping that you’d get the money you need, only to find out that you got little to no money or recognition through your hard work. You were constantly overlooked. It’s heartbreaking, terrible, and just a downright depressing feeling.

I know this experience too well, and it makes you eventually ask yourself, “am I really just a shitty writer?” Throughout your art education, professors will always emphasize that being able to write well will get you somewhere and help you get grants for projects. If you can’t write, how will you be a successful artist? By now writing almost feels like a chore. On top of all the papers you have to write for your liberal arts classes, writing is no longer appealing, even if you used to write for fun. It’s not something you’d want to do in your free time.

In this article, I’m mostly referring to myself and my experiences with writing. Ever since I could write I enjoyed doing it a lot. I wrote in a journal, I wrote poetry and stories that I made up in my head. Anything that came into my imagination I would write about it, but as I aged I had to start writing for school assignments and “writing assessments” which were required tests that scored our writing. We were trained vigorously on reading and analyzing a passage that we had to write about critically. I never enjoyed it, and most of my former peers from middle and high school will say the same.

I was in a rut and hated writing for a while. I believed I absolutely sucked at it from my past experiences, but eventually I learned to pick up at it again through some insight and advice from peers and some of my professors, and how one can improve their writing.

 

Read books that you love

Reading, surprisingly but also not so surprisingly, can help you with writing in many different ways. It’s not at all limited to just books too. It can be comic books, articles, and poetry. Any of these can give you some inspiration. Find an author or poet that you favor and start reading more of their stuff, find more authors related to them and read from them.

 

Keep a journal

Write and jot your thoughts down in it. It could be just you talking about your day or what you’re thinking about, or a project idea. Doodle in it if you want to. Write whatever you want to your heart’s content.

 

Challenge yourself

If you want, set goals for writing. Look up prompts and pick one that you feel would be the most fun for you to write about. You can do this every day or once a week, or even once a month. You don’t have to push yourself too much. Remember, you’re doing this for fun. Don’t stress out too much if you don’t meet a goal either.

 

Be kind to yourself

We all have that inner critic telling us that what we’re doing is pointless, or not good enough. If you listen to your inner critic, it often makes jumping into a new project or writing less motivating. Remember to be kind to yourself and be proud of the work you are making. Stop beating yourself up and banish that mean critic inside of you.

 

In the past, I believed that I was a terrible writer for the longest time which kept me from doing what I loved. You don’t necessarily have to be the best at writing, but getting back to it for fun can contribute to making you better at it. When writing some of your thoughts in a journal, you never know that it could help you write that perfect artist statement that you’ve been struggling on.