#1: On Writing by Stephen King
I have never read a Stephen King book in my entire life, but this memoir has stuck with me since the first time I read it in 2020. In the early pandemic days, when we had infinite time, I decided to commit myself to be a writer. So I started structuring my days by creating a writing routine, and this book inspired me to write seriously. As the synopsis on Goodreads says “On Writing will empower and entertain everyone who reads it — fans, writers, and anyone who loves a great story well told”.
Tips on Rewriting:
“When you write a story, you’re telling yourself the story.” he said. “When you rewrite, your main job is taking out all the things that are not the story.”
“Remember that the basic rule of vocabulary is use the first word that comes to your mind, if it is appropriate and colorful”
Tip on Being a Good Writer:
“Good writing is often about letting go of fear and affection. Affection itself, beginning with the need to define some sorts of writing as “good” and other sorts as “bad” is fearful behavior.”
“If you don’t have time to read, you don’t have the time (or the tools) to write.”
#2: The War of Art: Winning the Inner Creative Battle – Steven Pressfield
I found this book before On Writing, which fuelled my desire to write. The War of Art is the perfect book to read if you are creative and need a kick to start that project/thing you have always wanted to do. The War of Art is about learning to overcome inner creative battles such as procrastination and fear but doing it anyways. The War of Art is about recognizing how Resistance is the root of our creative suffering and learning to recognize our current and ideal selves to achieve our dreams. In other terms, it is about recognizing The Ego and The Self. The Ego hates change and will paralyze you with negative emotions and discomfort, such as doubt, fear, and anxiety before you start the project because of the feeling of being a failure. The Self craves growth and acknowledges that manifesting our dreams takes hard work. The Self is willing to take risks and do anything to accomplish our dreams.
“Rule of thumb: The more important a call or action is to our soul’s evolution, the more Resistance we will feel toward pursuing it.”
“Resistance has no strength of its own. Every ounce of juice it posesses comes from us. We feed it with power by our fear of it. Master that fear and we conquer Resistance.”
The Ego vs The Self:
“The Self wishes to create, to evolve. The Ego likes things just the way they are.”
“The instinct that pulls us toward art is the impulse to evolve, to learn, to heighten and elevate our consciousness. The Ego hates this. Because the more awake we become, the less we need the Ego.”
#3: The Practice: Shipping Creative Work – Seth Godin
“The Practice will help you get unstuck and find the courage to make and share creative work. Godin insists that writer’s block is a myth, that consistency is far more important than authenticity, and that experiencing the imposter syndrome is a sign that you’re a well-adjusted human. Most of all, he shows you what it takes to turn your passion from a private distraction to a productive contribution, the one you’ve been seeking to share all along.” (Goodreads).
I was gifted this book for my birthday, and it catapulted me to write consistently and publish something every day for 30 days after months of inconsistency. Seth Godin is amazing at inspiring creative people to do the damn thing. I always feel refreshed and motivated after reading and listening to him on podcasts (Check out his Tim Ferris episodes if you want a snippet of his wisdom).
11. Creativity Is an Action, Not a Feeling:
“Your work is too important to be left to how you feel today. On the other hand, committing to an action can change how we feel. If we act as though we trust the process and do the work, then the feeling will follow. Waiting for a feeling i a luxury we don’t have time for.
167. You Don’t Need More Good Ideas, You Need More Bad Ideas:
“The muse has passed you by and there’s nothing left to create. Instead of saying, “I’m stuck, I can’t come up with anything good,” it’s far more effective to say, “I’ve finished this, and now I need to make it better.” …. Befriending your bad ideas is a useful way forward. They’re not your enemy. They are essential steps on the path to better