By Javacia Harris Bowser
If you are a woman writer, this year resolve to write—by any means necessary. You are a writer and perhaps you are also a wife, a mother, a sister, or a career woman. You are a writer and most likely you are also a daughter, a lover, and a friend. Last year there were probably very few days when you failed to mother or to love or to be the best employee, boss, or homemaker that you could be. You may not have been perfect, but you always gave it your all.
But last year there were probably many days when you failed to write. You didn’t go to that workshop you wanted to attend. You didn’t write that poem, story, or essay in your head. You didn’t jot down those ideas you had for a compelling new character or a captivating new blog post. You didn’t write because you just didn’t have the time, because you were busy being a good mother, lover, wife, sister, daughter, or friend. You were busy being the best employee, boss, or homemaker that you could be. You couldn’t carve out time to write, you told yourself, because that would be selfish.
But you were wrong.
Maybe you’re hesitant to call yourself a writer because it’s been so long since you did spend hours at your favorite coffee shop writing in your journal or working on your blog. It’s been too long since you’ve spent a day at your computer drafting the next chapter of your novel. Perhaps you’ve never done these things.
But you are a writer. So this year, resolve to write.
Even if it means getting up early or staying up late, write. Even if it means taking your journal with you to the bathroom, writing during your lunch break or during your kid’s naptime, write. Whether it’s for five minutes or two hours, write.
Remember that writing is a practice. Just as an athlete must frequently practice to master her sport or a musician must frequently practice to master her instrument, a writer must practice to master her craft. Your blog or that favorite journal of yours—view that as your rehearsal room or your practice field. The more you write, the more you’ll feel like a writer and the more you’ll realize that your practice of writing is not selfish at all. The world needs your words.
Your writing has the potential to inspire other women and girls to express themselves and live their best lives. Your dedication has the potential to inspire all those around you—your children, your colleagues, your family, your friends—to pursue their passions, too.
This year, resolve to stop being the writer who never writes; resolve to stop being the blogger who never blogs. And if you blog, resolve to blog like a boss. Embrace your entrepreneurial spirit and transform your blog into a business. Don’t be ashamed of earning wealth from your writing. In 2016, it’s time out for the starving artist cliché. You need to be a well-fed writer in order to nourish the world around you.
This year, resolve to write and to live a life worth writing about. Resolve to dream big. Set goals for your writing career or blogging business that are so lofty they scare you.
Resolve to take care of yourself. You can’t write a best seller if you’re dead and your blogging or freelance writing business can only be as healthy as you are. Resolve to rejuvenate your body with exercise, replenish your body with delicious, healthful foods, and restore your body with relaxation and rest. Resolve to love yourself as much as you love the people around you. Resolve to embrace your stories and look good while you share them. This is not vanity. Your stunning beauty is just the result of self-care. Resolve that everything with which you adorn your body—from the hair on your head to the shoes on your feet—will celebrate your unique and authentic style, just as your writing will celebrate your unique and authentic voice. Resolve to not only keep up with your favorite authors, but to also write the book you’ve always wanted to read.
And most of all, this year resolve to be the author of your own life.