How to Keep Your Writing Dream Alive (& Kick Ass While Doing it)

    keep your writing dream alive - superman

    Do you want to keep your writing dream alive?

    Then you’re going to have to fight for it.

    The villains in my story are not vampires or psycho-killers, but they can suck the life out of me and kill my spirit just the same.

    One is a grade eleven geography teacher, one’s a high school crush from the old neighbourhood,  one’s a smarmy guy in a fancy boardroom, and the other one is a pitiless workshop leader.

    These are the villains of my writing life.

    They creep into my bedroom at night and whisper to me that I’m not smart enough, not interesting enough, not talented enough, not good enough. They barge into my psyche and start trashing the place. They rip apart my ideas and ridicule my novel. They toss my self worth around the room and stomp all over my dreams of ever being published. They leave me shivering in the corner amidst the shredded remains of my novel.

    Then I wake up and realize none of this is real.

    We all have our demons. We’ve all heard crappy people say crappy things to us at one time or another in our lives. If you want to keep your writing dream alive, don’t listen.

    We hang onto that crap for way too long, letting it croon its repetitive song at centre stage in our brains, while we relegate any praise, awards or accomplishments to back-up singer status. But if we really want to keep on writing, we have to become the heroes in our own story. We have to stand up to those villains, be vigilant, stay awake to what matters and not let nightmares shape our writing life. To truly come to a place where we see ourselves as good enough, we must defend, fight, envision, love and do our writing. We must let our writer lead the charge.


    Defending your right to keep your writing dream alive is one way to fend of the bad guys. When they show up, exercise your right to not let them in. Gently close the door and keep writing. Even if the writing isn’t perfect, flowing or great. Occasionally they’ll hammer at the door, but put your head down and stay focused on the work. Slowly, they’ll lose interest and leave you alone. Ignore them long enough and they’ll go away for good.


    There comes a time in every heroes story when you have to keep your writing dream alive by kicking some ass. Sometimes those villains are sneaky buggers and manage to get past the door, invading your psyche and acting like they own the place. Well they don’t. You own you. Take them out! Call each one out, look them straight in the teeth and let them know who’s boss once and for all. Standing up to this old baggage, those long-held hurts or those deep wounds can be the catalyst that finally exposes their weaknesses and sends them packing. Once you see them for what they truly are — false, ridiculous, timeworn, useless or petty – they tend to disappear in a hurry.


    Remember, keep your writing dream alive, not your nightmare. See it, believe it and live it. Sure it’s not real at the moment, but neither is your nightmare. Both can fuel you in good or bad ways. Choose to fuel your writing life with dreams of joy, abundance, family, fortune, fame, connection, adoration, fans, blessings, readings, best sellers, Ellen appearances, a house on the ocean … whatever works for you. Your villains will hate this vision and crawl back to wherever they came from. Let them.


    Take your writer out once in a while and romance them. Treat them like they’re special because … they are. Let them know you love them. Make them a nice cup of tea, arrange a cozy corner for them to write in, take them for a long walk to ponder a chapter, take them out to a lovely café to write, give them a good book to curl up with and be sure to let them get lots of rest, good food and exercise. Taking care of your writing hero will ensure they are strong enough to defend you when your villains try to bust in.

    Do keep your writing dream alive

    Write. Write when the villains knock. Write even when they bust in the door. Write about them. Write about your dreams, your love of writing and your inner hero. Write. Write. Write and live happily ever after.

    keep your writing dream alive!

    About the author

      Katie Tallo

      Katie Tallo is a writer, director, motivator, runner, vegetarian and mother who writes a blog that encourages steady, positive actions for sustaining joyful and vibrant life change, Momentum Gathering.

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    • Buy LED TV says:

      Love the subheadings. They read like a mantra! I feel like I just finished a session with my shrink (less the $150 cheque!). Thanks for the affirmation!

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    • Free Sky says:

      I’ll always hold them dear in my heart, and if you’re in the Boston area, or just want to find out about a great center for writers, writing teachers, and literary appreciators, check them out!

    • David says:

      Your post was great. I find the biggest ‘villain’ is inside me, the feeling of not being a good enough writer.

      • David, I hear you. I’m the one who let those people have a place inside my head … and I’m hoping to be the one to escort them to the door, one by one.

    • Sam says:

      Awesome. Nice collection. I like this post because its not something rewritten for the sake of writting. Impressive and action oriented thought. Thanks.

      • Thank you Sam. Action is one of the toughest parts of living a fruitful and fulfilling writer’s life. I’m glad the post felt action-oriented.

    • Jean says:

      That was a great post and one that I think just about all of us can relate to. Like you said, it’s all about shutting out those monsters and writing our own story.


      • For sure Jean, writing your own story and knowing deep inside that it’s one worth telling is so important to a writer’s life.

        • Sam says:

          It’s been talked for over times. Story telling or merging a service with a story gives personal touch for the user and it connects well with him emotionally.

    • Free Sky says:

      For a project I need to read a book that is an example of life writing. would “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens be considered Life Writing?

      • Stephen King’s book “On Writing” is all about his writing life, his regime, his approach, his way of living a writer’s life, including a harrowing passage about getting hit by a car. I’d say that’s a book that would work.

    • ” look them straight in the teeth ”

      Eueueh, why must I look at there teeth? Must I discover the spinaze stain or something like that?
      And then to think women always say ‘ my eyes are right here’ when a men’s attention drifts away to more joyeus places. 🙂

    • Katie, You know I love your writing, so I’m so happy that you are your own hero! I love the metaphor throughout this post and appreciate you sharing your wisdom so creatively.

      I just finished an e-book and yes the villains were standing in my way. I had to stare them down by writing through them, and then they got tinier and tinier, losing their power. They creep back in when I’m trying to release it into the world.

      And, I love the idea of romancing the writer. I think I do this (sometimes), and it so pays off!

      (P.S. No worries about reviewing my book. There’s no rush. It will be there when the time is right.)

      • Thank you Marci. It sounds like you’ve been on a journey with your new ebook. I can’t wait to dig in this weekend. Releasing our work can be scary for sure, but what others think of it is out of our control so it’s best to do as you have been doing, write past those villains and romance your inner hero. She’s done a lot of work lately that she and you can be proud of. Congratulations.

    • Katie,

      I have the same waking up in the middle of the night and doubting my writing. It’s crazy how writers are always doubting themselves. I’ve read that even best selling authors have those moments, so I guess they stay with us for life.

      • Sonia, it is crazy, but I guess our psyches are a little more vulnerable when we’re alone in the dark. Yes, everyone suffers from a little doubt and fear no matter who they are. It’s whether you let it get the best of you that makes all the difference to your writing life. May yours be peaceful and free of doubt (at least in the daylight). 🙂

    • Fran Sorin says:


      What makes your blog so special, outside of excellent writing and meaningful writing, is your authentic voice and vulnerability. I identify with your thoughts. Love the phrase ‘inner hero. Am going to use it as my mantra today. Fran

      • Fran, I am touched that you feel that way. I think the more we share our vulnerabilities with each other, the more we realize they don’t have to hurt us, but can empower us … and others. Thanks for being here Fran.

    • Nika says:

      This was exactly what I wanted to hear!

      thank you

    • Love the subheadings. They read like a mantra! I feel like I just finished a session with my shrink (less the $150 cheque!). Thanks for the affirmation!

      • Ruth, that’s awesome. “Defend, fight, envision, love, do.” – my new writing life mantra. Affirmations keep me sane. Thanks for the great comment.

    • Hi Kathy, lovely post as usual. This is exactly what all of us need to read when the monkey voices in our heads get too loud. 🙂 Cheers

    • Echoes says:

      this amazing ,, i totally agree with you here ,, such a wonderful way of writing :-))

    • Michele says:

      I have been considering giving up (writing, that it), but this was just what I needed to keep going. Thank you!

      • Michele, it is not easy forging ahead – it’s often lonely, tough, even boring but it can also be magical and life-affirming. I’m so glad the voice telling you to give up is not winning.

    • Write on!!

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