How Much Advice Before Breakfast?

It’s nearly 8 am and with no milk for coffee, I went to my local café for some scribbling and breakfast. The grocery store opens at 9, allowing me time to stock up on lunch items as the library returns to normal hours. The bright-blue bag in the picture is my grocery bag, ready to greet the resupply. 

People usually advise not to start a blog post with boring details. Lately, I received a lot of writing advice as I write more. I look for that magic combination although intellectually none exists. It’s the message taken from David Ebenbach, one of the instructors for Gotham Writers. His article Should I Take Their Advice? talks about the onslaught of advice beginning writers seek. I count myself among them. 

I read it this week but the article stayed with me for many reasons. It’s not about the words on the page, it’s about the source of those words, my head. I don’t see writing as a full time career, more like a partner in my life. That revelation came before the article and deflated the pressure put on me, by me, to take a well-worn path of going full time. I know when I write, I breathe. Even words written on my smartphone gives me joy.

I will not trade in my journal, I just started a new one this week, as the main source of generating ideas. People wonder what does she write in it? Answer: Everything.  A record of my day, imaginary letters, the start of a blog post or personal essay, a scrap of a plot or character, the rest for my eyes only. It’s my safe place to come face to face with things I don’t feel comfortable sharing.

Most of all, I give myself advice and encouragement.  I get both from the people in my life, a good network of people I met along the way. The best advice to have before breakfast comes from three simple words,  just do it.

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