Hey, writers, it’s a beautiful day here in Pennsylvania, as you can probably see, and I’m sitting out here on my deck, getting ready for StoryADay September.
Are you ready?
I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling some resistance. Definitely feeling some resistance.
And it’s kind of crazy because we want to write, right, we want to be doing this thing, which is going to make us more fully ourselves is going to make us happier and easier to live with.
It’s going to create a legacy for us all the stories that we’re going to leave behind, all these moments where our loved ones are going to see us doing something that’s important to us, where they start to respect it, where we start to respect it.
It’s going to make us happier.
And yet we resist because it’s not easy. And I was thinking about this.
The Hero’s Journey
And I was thinking about the hero’s journey, you know, that circle, Joseph Campbell laid out with the stages of the hero’s journey on it? And I was thinking that the stage that I’m at right now, maybe you’re there, too, is this moment, right before you step over the threshold from the normal world, the ordinary world, the everyday world, into the magical world, magical world where you’re a writer, and you’ve made that choice, and you’ve made that step and you’ve declared,
“I’m going on this journey.”
And that’s scary.
And it’s not a coincidence that even in the most heroic of stories, the hero doesn’t do it alone. That’s the point right before they step over the threshold. That’s the point where the hero hesitates, refuses the call, decides they’ll maybe do it next year.
And they wait there, until something comes along, until someone comes along—that mentor—and says to them, come on, you’ve got this, let’s do it together. And accepting help from that mentor doesn’t mean that they’re going to be with you forever, they’re not going to do it for you. It just means that you’re human, that maybe you’re a hero, if you need someone to help you take that step.
The Heroic Hesitation
I’ve done it in my own life.
I have always struggled with my weight. I used to use food to stuff down my feelings. Some of them were my feelings about writing: I wanted to be writing but it’s hard and resistance kicks in. And it’s much easier to get into the kitchen and find a bag of chips and start shoveling them in.
And then eventually, you know, I wanted to be in control.
It was when I found a mentor who spoke to me in the way I could hear that I was able to drop 25 pounds and give up those binges.
Instead spend that time and that brainpower on things I really wanted to be doing like writing and hanging out with my writing friends.
And the same thing happened with my writing. I was sporadic. And I would start to write and fall away from it. And it wasn’t until about a decade ago when I started going out to writers groups.
I had to kiss a bunch of frogs to find the group and the people that work for me. But eventually, I found that group which served as the mentor, which extend the hand and said to me, come over, come over with us into the magical world, we’re writing is part of your life. But I’ve never looked back.
I don’t know that I could have done it when I was when I was younger, because I was young and British and we don’t ask for help for stuff. But after I’d been living in America for a while, and I got a little older, it became a lot easier to ask for help.
And to realize that this was this was my moment.
Finding Your Mentor
Asking for help was freeing, you know. And I found my mentors. And they helped me step from the ordinary world into the magical world. And it IS magical. I get to hang out with people who make up stories all the time,
I get to hang out withpeople who understand what I say, what I mean. When I say I’m writing, even though I’m staring at the wall.
I talked to somebody recently told me that she had to fight her brother for the laptop because he thinks she’s not writing, when she’s staring into space. So he steals the laptop and and starts playing games. And I get it, I know exactly what she means.
I also know what it means to be standing on that threshold. And to be thinking, “yes I want to write but I’ve got all these other things I need to do.” You know, Luke Skywalker in Star Wars, he had all kinds of other things he had to do. He had to help his uncle with the ‘Vaporators and the harvest was coming in.
It’s not until he meets Obi Wan Kenobi that he sees a path. And when he takes that step, he has his mentor for a while to help him.
So, long story short….
If you’re thinking about writing this September, there’s a place where you can get help to help you step over that threshold.
I’m part of that.
We will be your companions, we will be your mentor, to help you make take the step from living in the ordinary world, to living in the magical world where you get tell stories, and tell them often, and be the person that you want to be.
Sure, you can cobble this together yourself. I certainly did that.
It took me probably seven years to figure it out, to get to the point where I had my crew in place, and I had my mentors, and I had my routine, and I was comfortable on that journey.
The internet’s a big place. There are lots of writers out there. There are lots of teachers out there. There are lots of places and communities where you can go and look for what you need.
I would invite you to consider joining us in the StoryADay Superstars group.
I promise you is one of the most supportive, generous, fun communities of writers that I’ve ever come across. There’s no snark (well, only good snark). There’s no competition. Everybody is there to support everyone else. Some of the people will be further along the journey than you. And some of the people will highlight the fact that you know a little bit more about these things than they do.
Trying to become a writer by yourself can, absolutely, be done. Of course, it can.
But it’s tough. And there are many bumps.
There are many days when you will question whether it’s worth it, whether you have the talent, whether this is even a valid thing to want. I spent a lot of time out there in the ordinary world, wondering if this was right for me.
It’s so valuable, having people around you who are on the journey, having someone like me as a mentor, who can reassure you and show you the beginnings of the path, so that you can forge your own way forward your own journey, walk on the path you’re meant to be on.
It gets you there so much faster.
You don’t have to kiss any more frogs.
You found us.
We’re here waiting for you.
Taking That Step Into The Magical World
StoryADay September starts in a couple of days.
The Superstars group runs all the way to April.
But signups close on September 1, I really hope you’ll consider joining us to get where you need to go to take that scary step over the threshold to admit that you want to be a writer with everything that that entails, including the possibility of failure, the possibility of stumbling.
It’s so much better when you have people around you to pick you up and help you and lift you up or obstacles and show you paths that you didn’t even know existed yet.
I will be honest, it’s hard for me to make this video.
It’s hard for me to keep reaching out. And putting this out there and saying to people “come with us, be with us”.
I know how great it is to be in this group. And it would be very easy for me to sit here and say, “You know what? They don’t want to come, they won’t come..it’s fine.”
But if you’re watching me, I just know, (because I’ve been where you are): You want to write and you keep putting it off or maybe you start and you stop or you may you get to a certain point.and it’s frustrating and you haven’t found your people yet.
I think we might be your people.
Join us this September. Give us a shot.
Come on this journey with us.