The way you tell a story is more important than the story itself. It’s what makes it your story, and someday, might be what makes someone love that story so much.
Sound scary? I get that. Because if it has to sound like you specifically, when you’ve barely figured out your voice, much less if you like it. There are so many what if-s involved, far too many steps in the neverending quest of writing something “meaningful” that are never really clear, and oh my great aunt Eva how does everyone else know what they’re doing, is something wrong with me?
Imposter syndrome, anyone?
But remember, the way a story is told is more important than the story itself, right?
Just imagine this: you, as a writer, are chosen from all the other strangely normal people, to tell stories. Even if you do non-fiction! There’s a story in everything, and you are one of those special people that feels the calling to give that story meaning by telling it in your words. As a writer, you are chosen. Because anyone can tell a story, but not just anyone wants to. As in, really wants to. And then, fewer still who care enough to come learn from other writers.
You are a writer, and writing is your superpower. Even in this huge, intensely saturated and competitive industry, your voice is unique. Your experiences, thoughts, stories, and how you string them all together are unique.
So reread that line, and read it proudly: the way you tell a story is more important than the story itself. Your voice, your passion, your version of the craft. The world — or at least someone in it — needs your version of the story, specifically. Even if it doesn’t know that yet.
And yet, when you go back to writing — imposter syndrome.
Here’s what I want you to do the next time, though: because we need your story.
Don’t ignore it. In fact, embrace it.
A big part of your voice is your process. And as long as you are going through your process, you’re on the right path for you as a writer. Embrace not knowing what your writing’s actually going to read like as you draft it. Embrace having strange descriptions or simple prose. Just embrace your writing for everything it is in the first draft. Embrace the “bad” part of your process.
Then when you’re ready, change it. Editing cave is always there for when you want it. Whenever you need it along your process, it’s right there. Whether going into it is going to help or hinder your writing is something you’ll have to figure out while creating your own process.
But I want you to trust in your specific process. Trust that you know what’s best for your writing right now, and if you don’t, you will soon. But only if you trust and dare to write.
Because that process is going to shape the voice that will make your story really yours. Remember, the world is waiting. Feel free to let it wait, but it’d be a shame if no one ever got to indulge in a story told by you.
You’re chosen for your story. So write like it.
Follow Atticus on Instagram: @talesfromboredom