“You’re Too Old To Be A Writer.” Shut Up, Voice Inside My Head.

I was talking to Veronica James, author of Going Gypsy – One Couple’s Adventure From Empty Nest to No Nest At All and the woman behind the uber popular blog “Gypsy Nester” – or rather I was kind of shouting at her, because I was so excited that she’s agreed to teach a workshop at the Women At Woodstock Writer’s Retreat this year. And Veronica asked me about my own writing. How’s it going, she asked me? I gushed with pride about a book that I ghost-wrote recently for an attorney about an evergreen topic of importance to women, and then I grumbled something regretful about my own book that I’m trying to complete, and how I wished I’d started writing much earlier. And Veronica stopped me.

“Hogwash,” she said. “Do you know the average age of a best-selling writer?”

“No.”

“Fifty-five.”

Okaaay then. Okay.

I need to stop feeling that I’m starting so late in life. I’m not late. I’m here. I’m right on time. Doing what I really really love to do. If we’re where we want to be now, how can we wish we took a different path to get here? Maybe if we’d pointed ourselves, earlier, toward this place, maybe we would have ended up somewhere else, far away from Right Here Where We Want To Be. I need to stop saying to myself that I’m too old to be a writer; it’s too late. Shut up, voice inside my head.

Don’t question it. Don’t regret it. Just do it.

That’s what the Women At Woodstock Writers Retreat is all about. Doing it. Writing – all day, every day. Getting feedback and coaching. Standing up and reading our work aloud and seeing how it plays with our audience. Learning from published authors who can tell us much from the land we have not yet trodden upon, the place where we want to be, the place we’re trying, valiantly, to get to.  The Writers Retreat is for doing it. Full steam ahead.

 

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