(My original post was on The Fabulous Fictionistas website.)
Which “V” word? You ask.
No, but you may stumble over a few in the dark on the way to kitchen for more snacks.
Pfft. Even if we Fictionistas are taking one each on our writing journey and at times listening to it’s gut feeling instead of our tummies.
Sort of. Maybe. You’ll find many and we writers love to rack up the kill quotient and decimate the hearts of our readers for our own sick pleasure.
The “V” word I’m getting to is “VALIDATION”.
Boring after realizing vaginal intuition is a thing, I know, but stay with me.
As someone who works with an array of people, validation can be one of the strongest tools in my belt. We humans crave it. We like to pretend we don’t, but we do, and gaining such acceptance and understanding when it involves your passion? Lord love a duck, we crave this most.
You can close the shutters, ignore all forms of social interaction, and write yourself into early carpal tunnel, but then what?
We writers need validation for many things we don’t even realize. Here’s a fraction of the validation supportive writing communities can provide:
- The fact everyone’s first draft is better toilet paper than publish worthy, yet you never get rid of even tiny nuggets of brilliance.
- Staying up until the birds are singing to perfect a scene or finish revisions is worth the dark circles and week of walking like an octogenarian, because the result is more important than bathroom trips.
- Rejection letters are received by everyone brave enough to put themselves out there. They are also considered a point of pride and a challenge, especially to some famous author who refused to take no for an answer.
- Your browser history is a testament to hours of valuable research you’ll use 3% of and makes you look like a serial killer, arborist, and circus performer.
- The mushy middle is a real thing on and off the page and many have tips on how to combat them both. We’re all wearing sweats anyway.
- Sanity. With so many characters battling for attention in your brain, you’re not the only one to daydream and run your shopping cart into the kid in front of you. Chances are the wail and pissed of parents scowl proves an impressive character reference.
- “We are all rubbish at this.” Validation from a writer friend. All of which validate our insecurities as a writer. We can’t be positive 24/7 and word brilliance tends to sprout from bouts of inner conflict. Sometimes we need other to kick your ass into gear, and this is okay.
- That a shelfie ranks higher than a dick/tit pic. (I challenge you to send a shelfie in response to the next request seeking sauciness)
- Going without showering, a real meal, sleep, and physical interaction with another human is acceptable as long as you get your word count in.
- There’s millions of writers out there recycling elements of the same stories, but there’s only one you. And yes, your vampire-fairy adventure mystery romance has an audience you’ll discover if you work hard enough to find it.
Get out there and find writers who you can share something with, even if it’s only how awesome your new notebook is and how your cat/dog/lizard is cock-blocking your writing time.