Comparison is a deadly game in the writing sphere. I know this, because I’ve played it.
I have writing friends who are way ahead of me in their journeys. They’ve been writing since they could talk and I only started 1.5 years ago. They have hundreds of blog followers, published books, agents, and finished drafts. They get to go to huge conferences and rub shoulders with my favorite authors.
And I get jealous.
I’d just like to sit down and write a whole novel perfectly, ship it off to an agent, and get a massive book contract tomorrow. I want to have 5,000 email subscribers right now and have so many fan emails that I can’t keep up with them all. I want success now. I want to see fruit and benefits of my writing right now.
I’ve cried over my writing, thinking it will never be good enough. There have been days I can’t stop writing because it seems so perfect and the next day it looks like trash. Some days I’ll dance around the house I’m so happy because of a tiny achievement and the next day I’ll be staring at the blinking cursor.
I’d like to join the writing “elite” and have all the beginning writers looking up to me. I want to see my books in Barnes and Noble.
But the truth is, I’m not that great.
I might never be.
And that’s okay.
Every writer, every person, is on a different journey. My life, whether the personal side or the writing side, is not going to look like Jaye L. Knight’s. It won’t look like my friend Carly’s journey.
And I don’t care.
There’s a reason I’m right here, right now. God put me here for a purpose—to glorify Him. He’s given me the family and friends that I have for a reason.
Whether I become a famous author or not, I know that God knows what He’s doing. His thoughts are higher than my thoughts and His ways than my ways. (Isaiah 55:8-9)
But I can’t just sit around, waiting for something to happen. Bestsellers aren’t written in a day. (Sometimes not even in a year. 😉)
Writing, just like anything in life, takes time and effort to perfect.
A pianist doesn’t just sit down and write a concerto. They practice, they make mistakes, they start small.
Sure, they might wish they could write music that moves people to tears. They might compare their compositions to their favorite musicians.
But in order to succeed in anything, we must be patient. We must work.
The first time we walk onto the stage, we aren’t going to be phenomenal. We’re going to make mistakes, sometimes really embarrassing ones.
And there will always be someone better than us. A better writer, a better singer, a better dancer, a better plumber.
If we say, “I’ll never be as good of a writer as so-and-so,” we will never succeed. That’s a sure path to discouragement. If you keep comparing yourself to anyone but who you were yesterday, you’ll probably just give up.
But here’s the thing, God didn’t make you to be Jaquelle Crowe, Aleigha C. Israel, Nadine Brandes, or Brett Harris. He made you to bring Him glory by being who you are in Christ.
And that’s the best calling in life.
I owe a debt to the wonderful students and instructors on the Young Writer’s Workshop as well as my writing mentors, Aleigha C. Israel and Audrey Caylin, for always picking me up and pointing me to Christ I want to throw in the towel. Thank you. ❤