When the Monsters speak, keep writing.
I’ve been writing on Medium for five weeks — long enough for some of the Monsters to awaken and start muttering things in my ear.
Things to try to get me to go away.
Maybe they’re saying things to you, too.
1. No one’s reading your stuff anyway.
Okay, maybe not literally no one, but very few. What’s the point of writing if hardly anyone’s reading?
Answer: Well, there’s lots of points. I’ll tell you some of them. (a) You’re learning to write, with every sentence. (b) You’re learning to use Medium. (c) You’re developing a backlist of articles that you’ll be able to pull from, build on, and refer to in the future. (d) You’re making that list available so that when your readers do find you, they’ll have this treasure trove to explore. (e) By posting often, you’re sending out smoke signals. Maybe your future followers haven’t found you yet, but how are they ever going to find you if you don’t post?
2. You don’t have anything original to say.
Everyone’s already covered everything. You’re unnecessary.
Answer: Uh, “unnecessary”? Come on — everyone is necessary. “Unnecessary” isn’t even applicable, besides being rude.
Maybe the material isn’t new, but everyone has to deal with that reality. After all, humans have been writing for something like 20,000 years. Yes, a lot of it is saying the same things over and over in different ways — but people need to hear things over and over in different ways. When you rephrase and repeat it and reinforce it in your unique terms, you’re doing necessary work.
Besides, dear one, you are new! You bring a permutation of perspective and voice and experiences that one else has or has ever had or could ever have in the future. If you’re not yet appreciating the value of that, it’s because you haven’t yet written enough to see it. Keep writing.
3. Okay then: You’re too different.
You’re either ten miles ahead of other people or ten miles behind or ten miles over there. In any case, you’re so different that no one will even understand or relate to what you’re saying.
Answer: Can I just say, “Unlikely”? First off, we’re all human beings on this planet. And if you’re not, don’t you think people would be even more fascinated to hear what you have to say, whether they understand it or not?
Second, when you do continue to try to communicate, eventually you’ll find a way. You’ll then experience the marvelous discovery that you aren’t that different, and you can connect. You’ll discover belongingness. Trust me, it’s nice.
We’re all at different stages of development and different levels of knowledge, with different backgrounds and languages, and interested in different things.
So, remember the bell curve?
Out on the tails, there might be way fewer people — but out there, every single voice is that much more precious. You might be the only person able to speak for your tail. So write for your tail. And write to help the rest of us understand your tail. At least try, for Pete’s sake. Humanity needs you in order to be whole.
4. I’m tired, busy, depressed, overwhelmed, confused, uninspired, in pain, etc.
Answer: So are we all. Write it. We’re listening.
SK Camille writes about life, love, healing, and her adventures in motorbiking, travel, and dance. She was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, in 1966 and has been a digital nomad since 2016.