Useful Lies and Stumbling Blocks

by | Dec 15, 2021

There are the lies your Sunday School teacher [or parent, rabbi, or mentor] taught you about — those you shouldn’t believe or tell yourself or others. And then there are quite different “lies” … useful fictions, so to speak.

One of the best examples of this second kind of, “fiction” came into my life several decades ago when I worked at a major magazine in New York that was well known for great writing. The editors and publisher often spoke about “the magic of the written word,” in almost reverential tones and I always found that characterization of writing to be inspiring. It called one out, to strive to be better, to believe that good writing took effort that the effort was worthwhile. It made a difference. Now I know pragmatically, there’s not necessarily real magic in writing. But isn’t the idea inspirational? It is for me. It works like thinking of yourself as something before it is reflected in reality, as one does when saying affirmations or stating goals in the present tense like, I am healthy; I am successful; I have loving relationships. It calls you higher, to be your best self. And yes, some days … it’s a process.

Then there’s the other kind of lie. The stumbling block, that limits your ability for no reason except for the fact that you tell it to yourself and believe it. As much as the inspiring lie, or, temporary fiction, spurs you forward this one holds you back with at least the same amount of force. And these lies are much more common. Which ones have you believed?

  • I’m not capable of writing a book.
  • I can’t write a quality book.
  • No one is interested in what I have to say.
  • It takes too much time and effort.
  • I will write when I get over my “writer’s block”. (The truth about overcoming writer’s block: apply seat to chair, fingers to keyboard or pen to paper — get started, because the ideas will come AFTER, not before you start.)

If you’re struggling with the more common lies and are letting them stop you from writing, remember the power of the 4-M’s: Magic, Mischief, Manuscripts and Motion.

First, keep your eyes on your goal: Magic is what happens between you and the reader, and it includes your vision for your book — what it will communicate and accomplish.
Along the way, beware of the Mischief that can be caused by all the lies that stop you.
Finally, know that Manuscripts happen when you get into Motion (action) and decide to start writing even a little bit each day. Pretty soon, you’ll find yourself much closer to the magic you want than you could ever have imagined before you started.

To learn more about writing click this link.

As always, send us an email if you have any questions and keep writing.