Tag Archives: Non-fiction

A Squirrel Trying to Swim Upstream

On Monday, my son announced that he wanted to be an Olympic swimmer. By Wednesday, he was ready to join the NBA. Before Friday was over, he was talking soccer and the World Cup. The truth is, maybe he will be famous one day, but today he’s just a ten-year-old who is still developing and discovering his talents.

Many of us are like that as writers. Have you decided that you only write fantasy, before you’ve even tried non-fiction? Do you only write poetry because you believe you don’t have the stamina to finish a novel?

I love this quote by Albert Einstein:

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

Now let’s apply it to writing.

“Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a [non-fiction writer] by [her] ability to [write dialogue], [she] will live [her] whole life believing that [she] is [not talented enough].”

As writers, we need to discover and develop our true talents by trying new things. This month, get outside your “genre box” and try to write in a different genre.

You may discover that your frustrations are due to the fact that you are a squirrel trying to swim up-stream.


Photograph by: Hernán De Angelis Campephilus (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
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