I don't want this to sound too cheesy, but... WHOA. It got more awesome when you showed up.
And I'm so glad you're here.
Welcome to The Lionhearted Writing Life! I'm Lucy Flint ... but you already had that figured out.
This blog wants to be your new friend if you:
- know that you want to be a novelist, but wish that it wasn't this hard
- describe yourself as having a love/hate relationship with writing
- say that you like "having written" but not the actual writing
- find yourself derailed by fear, perfectionism, or comparison to other writers
- feel stuck in this learning-to-write-better phase
- struggle to find the balance between overworking and being lazy, between work and rest
- want to quit writing, to just give up and walk away
Honestly, at one point, all of those statements described me and my writing life.
But in the spring of 2014, I had a—well, you could call it a change of heart.
And I started on the path of discovering what this thing, this lionhearted writing life, might look like.
I learn by taking notes. And since so many writers have taught me, I want to turn around and share what I'm figuring out as I go. So ... this blog was born.
And the more I figure out—that writing doesn't have to feel terrible, it doesn't have to suck the soul out of you, it doesn't have to totally destroy your body, it can actually be fun!!—the more excited I get.
(And, okay, fair warning: I do get pretty dang excited. There is Dancing. There is Merriment. There is Chocolate. Be prepared for such things.)
I'm on a mission to get rid of misery in my writing life. And in yours too! No more miserable writing days! Doesn't that sound awesome?
I spent eight years having more miserable days than joyous ones. And now that my writing life is so much happier, it kinda ticks me off that I let perfectionism, envy, fear, and all their buddies camp out in my writing space.
They slowed me way down and mucked up all my work. For years.
Sheesh! Stuff like that makes me wanna punch fear in the face.
I believe two things unshakably:
1) The world needs more amazing, light-giving stories.
2) Amazing stories come from writers with amazing hearts.
Meaning? When I take care of myself, and work to have good, nurturing days, my writing gets better. Like: a lot better. Plus, I'm happier. It's such a nice solution.
I'll be real with you: I'm still learning a lot. I don't have this all down perfectly, and I keep re-learning the things I'm blogging about. But what I've been able to practice has helped me so much, and I love hearing how it's been good for other writers too.
So here's what you'll find if you stick around (and I REALLY hope you do! the more the much merrier!):
- practical tips on how to bring more courage into your writing life
- ideas for how to manage yourself and your time, with kindness as well as discipline (because I think discipline and grace can go hand-in-hand)
- pointers about the writing itself: the process, the material, the pursuit of inspiration and creativity
- recommendations for books—usually on craft, creativity, or self-management—from the brilliant writers that I'm learning from (I might turn into a total nerd/fangirl when recommending books, but you're cool with that, right?)
- the occasional fight song, dance party, pep rally, or chocolate fest. I will mention coffee. And will contemplate the benefits of a gin & tonic from time to time.
The writing life: it doesn't have to be awful, miserable, or lonely.
Sound good? Are you in?
I'm posting articles on the first and third Thursday of the month, and I tend to group a month's posts around a general theme. (Check out past articles in the Archives!)
I love hearing what you're thinking about these same topics, so please write back in the comments! I also hang out on Twitter and Instagram, so come and say hello to me @reallucyflint (not to say that the other Lucy Flints aren't real too...).
One last note: while I looooove cheering you on as you work on your novels and other writing, I'm not in a position right now to read and give feedback on anyone's work. But believe me when I say that I'm excited for you, and so glad that we get to pursue good words and craft side by side!
Want to get reading? Here are a dozen of my most popular posts to get you started:
- Are you ridiculously in love with your writing? Or, um, not?
- This is the absolute worst thing I ever did for my writing.
- Can we stop being weird about writer's block?
- Three fears that stop us from beginning something good (and what to do about them)
- Think you won't make it to the finish line? Here's why that's totally okay.
- How to talk about your writing (without throwing up)
- Use your obscurity to become staggeringly good
- How (and why) to put your heart on a platter (Writing what scares you)
- After the honeymoon: Accepting the ordinary writing life
- Here's the truth about what you can't fake in your writing
- Refuse to feel sheepish about how completely odd you are (embrace your strangeness)
- 50 plot twists for your work-in-progress!
Fiction is extremely close to my heart—you can practically see it on my x-rays. As a kid, I spent a lot of time with a book wedged under my chin so I could look down and read while doing all my chores. (And I gotta say, it worked pretty dang well! For the reading, that is.) I filled dozens of blank notebooks with stories.
I went to Calvin College to study English and Creative Writing, where my fantastic professors taught me all kinds of stuff about writing short stories, poetry, and essays. After graduation, I moved back home (near St. Louis) and wrote six novels, now in various states of drafting.
Dearest to my heart is an adventure trilogy that I'm writing for middle grade readers. You will be hearing more about that, very soon...
I've won a national student competition with my story "The Patron," and my niece thinks my novels are cool.