All writing is optimistic. [38/52]

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I recently watched this excellent interview with Margaret Atwood. She talks about a variety of things, including her 5 pieces of advice for new writers (which are great), but one thing stuck out to me the most.

She says all writing is optimistic by nature.

I’m definitely an optimist (tattoo on my wrist says STAY POSITIVE, tattoo on my arm says THERE IS ALWAYS HOPE), so I was immediately interested to see where she was going. She’s not talking about the content that is being written; she’s talking about the craft.

She goes on to explain when you set out to write a book, you’re engaging in an act of optimism because you think you’re going to finish it (harsh, but true).

Then, when you finish it, you think it will be good (she’s not pulling any punches here).

And, since you think it is good, you think someone will publish it.

Finally, and perhaps the most optimistic thing for a writer, is that if it is published, you hope someone will want to read it.

This post is meant to be encouraging. Let me try to drive it home.

You should assume that you will finish the novel you start. And, you should think it will be good (after editing and such). You should think someone will publish it. And, of course, you should assume that someone will want to read it.

There can’t be too many stories out there. Go on, and write the story you want to write.

Jump. Build, Fly.
F.C. Shultz