Reason number one should be because we can say whatever we want in a headline in order to get attention. Truthfully, “hard” is all relative. I can’t tell you what’s hard for you, and what’s not. Whenever I hear a writer say that writing is hard, though, it makes me question their life experience. I also question their writing ability, because chances are, they can come up with a better word than “hard.” Here are five reasons why I will not say that writing is hard.
I don’t have a writing disability.
I’m not implying that people who say writing is hard have a disability. On the contrary, I’m a special education English teacher and I teach writing to middle school students with special needs. Whenever I feel like saying writing is hard, I think of them. For them, writing really is difficult. I’m blessed be able to organize a story, in that I understand sequence. I have enough of a handle on spelling that the autocorrect function in Microsoft Word works as it’s supposed to. I can differentiate between written and spoken English. Most importantly, if I’m stuck, I can seek help without the fear of being ridiculed.
Do you really mean “hard?”
I get what people are saying when they insist that writing is hard, but I wonder if meaning is lost in translation. Is “hard” a good word? Because “good” isn’t even a good word. It’s a question of word choice. Can you come up with a more accurate word, or more specific language? I’ll be the first to admit that writing is very effortful. It can be emotional. It can be draining. It can be aversive. It can also be the opposite of all of those things, which leads me to insist—
It’s vital to keep a positive mindset.
When we label actions as hard, we don’t want to do them. My twitter feed is filled all day long with encouraging words to get people writing. By working around the word “hard,” we are offering each other encouragement. Even if I have the uncontrollable thought that writing is hard, I’m not going to say it. I benefit more from positivity, and broadcasting positivity to others.
It’s important to have perspective.
Writing isn’t brain surgery. Of course, I wouldn’t really know that, because I’m not medically inclined. But perhaps we all have a better, more personal analogy to use. For me, writing is not finding out that you have to give up your lunch hour to sub a classroom. An hour with 35 children you don’t know, with no lesson plan because a teacher called in sick? Brain surgery sounds more fun. Whenever I think writing is hard, I think about the time I had to substitute teach a gym class, where kids kept skipping other classes and coming in the doors until I had about sixty of them—and then they started climbing the floor-to-ceiling ropes from the 1960’s, all the way up to the top. So no, writing isn’t hard.
Just think of what else you could be doing.
It doesn’t have to be the worst case scenario from number four. If you’re reading this, it’s because you like writing. When you feel like writing is hard, just think about what life would be like if you weren’t doing what you love. Or, think of something else you could be doing instead of writing. Then, writing doesn’t feel so hard. For example, I’d been putting off writing this blog until it came time for me to work out. Now I’m writing it, and it’s not so bad. At the very least, it’s better than working out.
No one likes a complainer.
This is a freebie. Remember that lesson your mom taught you when you were very little? It’s often true—no one likes a complainer. (Except me, I live with one, and I still love you, hon.)
What do you focus on when you feel as though writing is hard?