SELF-CARE FOR MOM WRITERS
November + December Are For Seeking Support
By Amy Mercer
Writing this column over the past year has taught me to think about how taking care of myself improves my writing. Over the past year, I’ve suggested hibernation, writing love letters, getting outside, reading poetry, taking a cooking class, learning how to surf and introducing yourself as a writer in an effort to take better care of ourselves as mom writers.
I struggle to stay motivated every day, especially now, as we head into the holiday season with the country in such a bleak financial situation, it’s hard to keep sitting down at the computer day after day feeling confident about calling myself a mom writer. But that’s why we’re here, to support each other, to boost each other when we are feeling down. So in my final column of the year, I want to thank everyone for reading, and offer my final bits of advice about taking care of ourselves by seeking support.
- Don’t beat yourself up over rejections, they happen to all of us, all of the time. Focus your attention on the magazines and journals that say yes or even the ones that say no thank you but good idea. And when the rejections come, because they will, don’t keep it to yourself. Tell a non-writing friend, go online and blog about it, get it out any way you can and then you’ll be able to move on to the next project.
- Read or re-read Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott and other inspirational books about the writing life. Anne uses humor to inspire and encourage the writer in all of us.
- Take a local writing class or sign up to teach one. I am almost at the end of teaching my first creative writing class and it has done wonders for my confidence. I love talking about what I’ve learned over the last six years with people who share the same passion. Sign up for a writing seminar or go to a reading. I recently went to a workshop presented by southern author, Josephine Humphries. I have heard her speak about writing several times before, and every time, I learn something new, every time I step away from my own life and listen, I am renewed.
- Continue to read e-zines such as this one, stay connected to the virtual world of mom writers who will remind you that you are not alone.