On Writing: encouragement

On Writing

I’ve been thinking a lot about what motivates and encourages me recently; while feeling rather unmotivated and discouraged (anyone else really hate winter?).

I write because I love to write. Getting words down on paper; playing with them, crafting them; gives me great pleasure. But, when confidence leaves me or I’m feeling tired or uninspired, what gets me back on track?

At Christmas I received a wonderful present from a very dear friend. It was a notebook, beautiful and perfectly handbag sized. But, that wasn’t what made it really special; it was the note attached to it.


She called me a writer. I don’t imagine she knew how much that would mean to me, or how encouraging it would be. Just one little word, on a post-it. But, it meant the world to me.

Because, for all that I love to write, and I truly do (even these few sentences have been thought through, moved around, reordered, edited!). Sometimes we all need a little encouragement. A boost, a pat on the back. A kind word or a constructive comment.

A compliment.

Life moves so quickly and I think we’re all guilty, at times, of skimming. Of not stopping and actually noticing details, of actually reading words. Of taking a minute to say, hey that’s really good, I like that.

Every comment on this blog, every share on social media, every link to a post; it gives me confidence, it’s rewarding and it makes all the hard work worthwhile.

Because it would be so easy to just skim.

And, when someone takes the time to notice, it makes my day.

It encourages me, it motivates me, it inspires me. I am truly grateful.

Muddled Manuscript


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29 thoughts on “On Writing: encouragement”

  1. What a wonderful gift from your friend and I understand how a simple little note can mean so much. And encouragement is so important isn’t it? Although I sometimes wonder if blogging is taking up too much of my time and that I should just be writing instead (not that blogging isn’t writing but you know what I mean, I think?) I’m also aware how much it’s given me by way of encouragement and community. I don’t think I would have got this far without the boost that I’ve got through posting my thoughts and poems and flash fiction and having people say “I like that” or “this is great”. Comments really matter don’t they? I love the way your posts always make me think and, I’m sure I’ve said this before but… you really have a way with words! A writer through and through! Thanks for linking to #WhatImwriting xx

    1. Comments really do matter, they make such a difference to our outlook, and thank you very much for your very kind one :)

  2. A fantastic and thoughtful touch from your friend, Sara. You’re absolutely right that sometimes a comment or a link – or even a quick like as an acknowledgement – can be so important. Fundamentally, as writers most of us are insecure to some degree. After all, we put ourselves out there in our words for the world to scrutinise and judge – how could you not feel insecure about that?

    1. I completely agree, every time I hit publish I have a moment of, what if everyone hates it! As you say, even a quick like lets you know that someone has been there x

  3. It’s lovely when a friend gets you and understands what you need to feel motivated. If I had a note like that I’d be looking at it every day to keep myself going. The next thing to do is get your notebook filled! : )

  4. A lovely friend and your thoughts are ones I totally agree with. I’ve been lucky enough to receive some lovely comments recently and they have been so incredibly comforting during my less successful moments. It really does make a huge difference. I always enjoy reading your blog Sara xx

  5. I totally get this! Your friend must be wonderful x I feel that buzz when I get the odd compliment, or somebody tells me they enjoyed something I’d written. In fact, I thrive on it!

    Keep believing because others do!

  6. You’ve just summed up here what it is that makes blogging so valuable to me. I think we all need a bit of encouragement, especially the lovely authentic kind that came in your friend’s simple note! I particularly love this #whatimwriting community for the meaningful engagement about the craft of writing that it brings. And I always look forward to reading your posts :) xx

    1. Thank you Sophie. Blogging, and this group, has been such an amazing thing for me. I am writing things that I never would have dreamed of doing a year ago!

  7. Aw such a simple thing but with so much meaning attached to it. I hope having the notebook to carry around with you gives you inspiration. I always carry one too. I love the blogging community and although I only write two posts per week, I couldn’t give it up. Without that support I would feel lost. It’s about finding the balance, isn’t it?

  8. Gorgeous post hon, and gorgeous notebook! I feel the same, it really is so encouraging isn’t it when people are kind enough to leave comments, and share on social media. I’m glad you’re feeling good about being a writer. You are one lovely, undoubtedly xxx

  9. Oh Sara what a lovely gift! It’s great to have a notebook when you need it but that note is perfect. You ARE a writer! I love this post, it’s encouraging and positive. Brilliant. xx

    1. Thank you Morgan, despite being tired and sick of the snow, I have been having moments of quiet positivity about my writing :)

  10. Love your inspiring gift from a friend. It’s lovely to be called a writer as often I’m not sure this is how any of us would describe what we do. Here’s hoping there are already lots of musings in your notebook already.

    1. Thank you Izzie, it’s a funny one isn’t it, are we writers if we write, or if we get paid to write…

  11. I couldn’t agree more. What a thoughtful present. I think with any kind of creativity, there’s an element of us putting ourselves ‘out there’ and when we get some recognition or encouragement for what we are doing, it’s like gold dust. So precious. What a lovely friend you have. x

  12. Gosh, I think everyone who has commented can relate to your questions and confidence dips. But you have such a great way with words, of crafting them as you say, and with every word you write you’re putting yourself out there for others to comment on – of course it’s scary at times. But you are a great writer as demonstrated here & throughout your blog.
    Your friend clearly is a very good friend.

  13. I completely understand that urge to just put words on paper. I love to write things down; it helps me think and organize my ideas, and gives me a sense of accomplishment. I remember on more than one occasion as a child looking at a blank piece of paper and wanting to fill it up with writing (but drawing a blank on what to write!) I had no idea of the blogging community when I started. Way better than having my own blank piece of paper!

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