C h a z z W r i t e s . c o m

Write and publish with love and fury.

How to keep moving forward.

My wife, She Who Must Be Obeyed, deals with a lot of sad, difficult and traumatic situations in her noble work. She helps a lot of people but it’s not easy. To combat the downside, she keeps what she calls a perk file. That’s where she holds on to commendations and thank you letters from those she has helped. Writers should have a similar file.

As an author, you will have disappointments. It’s inevitable. As I wrote in a post below (The Writer’s Curse) we are imaginative and therefore perpetually dissatisfied. Copy and paste your fave reviews to a special file for those dark days to come. When the disappointments arise, reread those five star reviews and fan letters. Cherish them and keep going.

I’ve often thought about quitting, especially when I’m overwhelmed. (Quitting isn’t always a bad idea, either. More on that in a coming post.) I did stop writing completely for almost five years. Those were not good years. For me, the dissatisfaction of not writing is worse than the bad writing days.

This week, a reader reminded me why it’s important to keep going. Stories are powerful. I replied, thanking her for being a reader, of course, but her letter is too important an inspiration not to share with fellow writers. She wrote:

Dear Robert Chazz Chute,

I read zompoc because I need to read something that takes me away from my reality – a genetic condition that slowly transformed the woman who could turn somersaults in mid-air to the woman in a wheelchair.
Fortunately,my sense of humour is intact.
Friends, family and NHS have stuck with me, so I’m lucky compared to most disabled people.
And the connection with This Plague of Days?
It distracted me from my pain – always present unless I’m asleep.
Yep. Stories are that powerful.
Even when they’re stories about unrelenting terror.
This Plague of Days is an epic piece of writing.
But you know that already.
I just felt like telling you that I know that too.
And thank you for writing something that set me free, for a while.

~ I am Robert Chazz Chute and I am often sad. I get misty reading this letter, but in a good way. I am less sad this week thanks to this reader. You can check out all my stuff at AllThatChazz.com, or just read and reread this letter to get inspired to write something epic that distracts readers from their pain. Distracting us from pain is, I think, what it’s all about.

Now I’m off to write more. Thanks again, to all the readers.

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Filed under: All That Chazz, publishing, Writers, writing, writing advice, writing tips, , , , ,

3 Responses

  1. Rob Great blog post.  I can say I completely understand the “perks file”, an overwhelming sense of wanting to write yet having doubts that make me stare at the laptop and then put it away again and dealing with difficult emotions. I recently wrote this post —https://christinalrivers.wordpress.com/2016/05/17/quo-vadis/

    What motivated me to share this with you was two-fold.  One, to encourage you and your wife in your journey forward. Second, to offer support as a fellow writer. I love your work.  I think more authors/writers need to hear from fellow writers how influential, inspirational and appreciated they are.  The industry can appear a bleak battleground of sales, marketing, reaching the top of lists in genre categories.  It really boils down to a realization that writers have a lot in common – and those commonalities should be embraced instead of seen as “competition”. Thank you for sharing and my motto (and perhaps yours and your wife’s may be too): Just Keep Moving. Best wishes, Christina Sent from Christina (C.L.) Rivers

    http://christinalrivers.wordpress.com

  2. mohanalakshmi says:

    For what it’s worth, I also get lots of encouragement from this blog :). Keep writing Rob, and keep that light aflame however you can.

  3. rchazzchute says:

    Thanks! Much appreciated!

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