A songwriter was interviewed a few years back and he made a statement that marked my life forever. He was encouraging creatives (which includes writers) to put out whatever they create without fear of judgment or criticism. He said that: “whenever I produce a song, I consider it a star in the sky. The beautiful thing is that you write a song and you cast it up there and the thing will shine forever whether people notice it or not….you put it there for everybody to enjoy”. And the truth is that even decades later, anyone in the world still has access to the star (the song) because it is in the sky already.

I believe the same applies to writers. Whatever project you write and publish is like a star that will reach people that you can never imagine exist, people you have never met and might not. JK Rowlings (author of Harry Potter) probably did not expect her book to be a best seller and the basis for the seven part movie series. I am sure when Shakespeare was writing his books – Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet for example – he never expected it to be legendary. Shakespeare wrote his books centuries ago but many writers still look up to him as a model. If there is a story or message in your heart that you know will positively change the lives of people, you should take it as a responsibility and put the story out.

Okay, enough on the inspirational approach to this subject. Let’s face the real, practical issues. Most of us consider our writings to be average, on our good days. So on our bad days, it’s just “crap”. Crap that we’re not willing to share even with our best friends. This might be discouraging to some people but I think it should be encouraging. There is a phrase that will be a game changer for you, “perfection is found within imperfection”. This means that the days you’ll write perfection might be few and in between but the more you write, the more you find you are putting out “perfect” works. The bitter truth is success sometimes comes through failure. You might consider your writings as crap but you are making progress regardless. Our goal should be progress, not perfection.

Let’s have fun for a moment. There are millions of bestselling authors on earth today only that their bestselling books are in a giant notepad under their bed or on their PC dated 12/12/2003 (it was never published). The truth is most people are scared of putting their contents out. From experience and research, there are two major reasons.

We talked about the first reason before; people are scared that their writings are not good enough. This is true sometimes but other times, writers talk themselves into believing that their writing is poor. Most writers expect to write pure gold on the pages in their first try. This happens sometimes, it doesn’t other times.

Another reason writers are scared to put their contents out is because they fear criticism from people. And it gets worse. Social media & the internet have given people opportunity to give their opinions – and most times the opinions are purely negative. A spiritual leader & author once said that if you are doing anything impactful, you should expect criticism. It is normal to get criticized only that social media has given people the platform to amplify it. So whenever you get negative criticism on your writings tell yourself “it is expected” and move on.

A less popular reason on why you need to write and publish your book is that it brands you as an expert in your field. How many amateurs do you know that has written books? Probably none. Imagine a stranger walking up to you after reading your book, the image of you being a professional is engraved in the person’s mind. And if you are concerned about making a living from writing, nothing makes you look more professional and financially valuable than if you have published books as evidence. Either ways, publishing the book you wrote is a game changer.

The songwriter I quoted in the beginning also said, “art is given to cause a change”. Change in individuals. Change in societies. Change in a generation. A book you do not publish cannot impact anyone. So write and publish it. Keep on putting your stars on the sky and probably 50 years from now, a 20 year old might read it, get inspired and decide to act on whatever idea you shared.

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