Monday, 2 November 2009

How to become a writer if you hate to write

How do you learn about anything? We all have our own methods don't we and I was talking to my friend and web strategist Kirsty Farrelly last week about it.

She needs to hone in on a source of information right from the beginning and only when she has the nuts and bolts of a subject in her mind does she move out and read more widely. My method is completely the reverse of that - I start widely then hone in.

What I like about my method is that gives me a range of ideas, thoughts and inspirations that I can use for my work or as in this case pass on to you.

Yesterday I was listening to a speaker named Jean Houston. No I'd never heard of her before but she has been influential in the personal development movement for the past 40 years. Her greatest mentor was Margaret Mead the anthropologist; as a young child she met Eleanor Roosevelt and Helen Keller.

More to the point for us though she's written 26 books. When asked how she did it, her answer was "I hate to write".

Now I'm really interested. Because if you like writing, you will write regardless of any other challenges in your life. But finding ways to help people who don't enjoy writing, is one of my passions.

So I'm all ears. And her method is quite simple and I guess if you've done any NLP or visualisation probably obvious.

Jean Houston loves to cook and is very good at it. Starting as a child in self defence so that she could eat properly, she taught herself to cook, became an expert and it's one of the joys of her life.

When she approaches writing a book, she therefore approaches it as a cook. In her mind she's creating a recipe with ingredients to produce a balanced result.

She includes good solid foundations, a mix to appeal to different parts of the reader's tastebuds and that essential extra of love that all good cooks mix in because onsciously it's what they're passionate about - feeding people and giving them a great experience.

Now the cooking analogy might not work for you. But you're great at something. Might be organising your family, might be painting or being a great friend.

Whatever it is try taking that expertise and passion into your writing and see what difference it makes.

What's my passion? Helping people to make the most of their talents. Love it and whatever I've done in my life I've always thought -"If only one person moves on because of what I've said, written or done I'm satisfied."

This week I'll be finding more out about Jean Houston. She sounds a formidable and unstoppable lady.

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