Writing Rehab- Madeline Clark

Sprinting, cutting, back to running, trapping the ball, looking for the open man, moving
again, touching the ball, one big pass across the field, sprinting again, chest heaving, open space,
ready for the pass, scoring!

Writing, like soccer, is a series of events. It isn’t just a onetime
occurrence and then you’re done forever. It takes practice and time. No elite athlete has ever
just decided, “Today I am the best there is to be at this.”

They take the time to hone their
capabilities. In order to obtain that goal in writing you have to be willing to try.
Personally, I hated practicing. There were so many rules and things to remember. Do I
use a colon or a semicolon? Should it be is or are? I strive for perfection in all that I do, which
can cause exceeding stress. Then I realized the only rules you have to abide by are your own.

I am writing for myself, not anyone else. Then my hand began to move, unleashing my feelings
and thoughts. The words flooded to my mind, and had to be set free. No restrictions, just me, while
the world faded out around me.

Writing is for each of us.

We don’t need to worry about rules and regulations. Be free of your own stringent
expectations. Write whatever you feel, when you feel it.

As with everything you may hit a road block with your writing. I hit a road block playing
soccer and ended up having knee surgery. My one love, my passion gone in a second. Anger and despair were my constant companions. Then physical therapy happened. I relearned to walk
again one step at a time. Sometimes in writing we experience surgical repair and think that the
end is at hand.

“I will never write again. I quit,” you think. Don’t give up. Sometimes you just
need a little bit of writing rehab. Something to get you out of that bed and trying again. It
doesn’t have to be huge. Like with my knee surgery, it can just be small, baby steps to start.
Little by little you can regain your confidence and run free again. Never let the road blocks stop
your writing.

Your thoughts are unique and important. You may come back a year later and say, “Oh, gosh. What
was I thinking?” That is good. Great even. It means that you are practicing and developing as a
writer. Never stop practicing. Never stop trying. Take the needed baby steps before you can
run. Writing is an expression of you. Find what works for you, because you are one in a million
and what works for me might not work for you. Try new things and go outside your comfort

Never stop trying and you will never stop succeeding.

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