Jay's Journey Back

My Forever Place Online

What is your greatest self-doubt as a writer?

January13

I think so many creative individuals become their own worst critic. I am no exception to that notion. I have written for years, going back to my early teens, when I’d write silly little rhyming love poems and short one-page stories.  I picked it back up in college when I was introduced to Robert Frost, D.H.Lawrence, Dylan Thomas and Joyce Carol Oates. I was hooked. I started reading again, started writing again and was gung-ho to ace the class. I ultimately failed my English 2 class, which was rather ironic, since most of the course is opinion based and left to personal interpretation. I look back on that class and I realize that the teacher was raking me over the coals simply because when asked during the first day of class to introduce ourselves and what we wanted to achieve, I said I wanted to be a writer. I don’t want to say that Mrs. Patricia Scully discouraged me from writing, but subconsciously it may have added to the self doubt that I have had about anything I’ve written.

Now fast forward 20 years and all the life that had been lived and passed giving me much more experience and wisdom, the poems went from silly rhyming puppy love poems to heartfelt, rip open your soul type of pieces. Still I felt they weren’t good enough. I never thought anyone would read them, let alone like them or relate their own journeys to the words I’ve spilled onto the page. It’s second nature for all artists to want perfection. The way I feel, is if I think something I write is perfect then I’ve reached the end.

Something can always be written better, different, with more feeling, more blood, more soul. Ask any artist if their work is good and I’d venture to say that most will pick it apart and give every flaw they see. I am no different.

In December of 2014, I made a clear decision that life is far too short not doing what you dream of doing. For me it was writing. I
write poetry and prose and have dabbled in screenwriting. I have always been a natural storyteller and poetry for me is a short story that uses a limited number of words put into the perfect sequence to create a visual for the reader. I started a Facebook page and I first thought only a few friends would be a part of it and of course like everything simply because they had to. That was true for the first week, then others started liking the page and leaving feedback. I won’t lie and say it didn’t make me feel good. I was getting positive reinforcement and it snowballed from there. The page is now over 3,000 followers. The likes, comments and shares I receive are at times overwhelming. I try and personally respond in one way or another to each comment or message. I feel I owe it to each person to acknowledge them and thank them for taking the time to offer their support.

Unfortunately for me, I have lost so much of my early stuff because it was all written on pieces of paper, never saved or the notebooks were lost. Not that I’d want to post it and use it to showcase my writing, but I’d like to be able to look it over and see how much I’ve grown as a writer and chronicle my creative journey. Having the Facebook page, has solidified the desire to become a full-time published writer. I am putting forth the time and daily writing to become the best writer I can be. Even if the page only had a handful of followers I’d still write, if my words impact one person, I am fulfilling what I feel I am destined to do.

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On Facebook Writer Jay Long
On Twitter @JayLongWrites
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How To Decide What to Write About

December29

What topics would you write about and how?”.

I find myself writing about so many different subjects. I’m not afraid of hitting on any of them. That’s mainly because my life isn’t set in one genre. Think about how boring that would be if you woke up every day and were stuck a romantic comedy or how young you’d end up dying from hypertension living in a horror film. I know that’s a far fetch, but you understand what I’m getting at. Life happens day by day and minute by minute. I take things as they come and my writing reflects that. Although the majority of my poetry and prose writing is about life and love, the ideas I have for screenplays range from Action Adventure, to comedy, to thriller type scripts. I grab bits and pieces from my daily life. I also capture ideas from things I see and people I come across. I wrote one of my most popular poems about a stranger. I saw her one day walking alone and I wrote her story. I molded her fears and disappointments simply by passing her in the parking lot of a Best Buy.

Don’t get me wrong, there are writers that excel in certain genres. Nicholas Sparks has to be one of the best Romance novelists in my opinion, just as John Grisham writes the best legal dramas of the last twenty plus years. All writers have their primary niche, but a good writer should be able to tackle every subject with open eyes and no fear. If I had my choice, I’d continue to write about love and life. Simply because it’s what I feel most and what pours out of me much more freely than anything else.

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Please keep in touch with me:
On Facebook Writer Jay Long
On Twitter @JayLongWrites
On Instagram @WriterJayLong

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Writer Jay Long

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