Skip to main content

The Thousand Miles Journey

I have been writing poems and short stories for years, some of which I have published independantly. I also blog. Writing is a loved hobby.


Finding Inspiration

Even as I am writing this particular article, I am feeling rather uninspired and discouraged. What are the reasons for such lethargy?

Well, let's begin with the fact that it has been literally months since I last properly wrote something worth mentioning, as it is. We all know about the pandemic and the disruptions it caused, and still is causing, to our lives. But without getting too into it since I'm certain that this particular subject has been mentioned thousands of time, I'll just affirm that yes, Covid19 disrupted my writing process and progress, thank you very much.

However, I am now ready to begin again. It's a chore, I am not joking, but I want to write again, so here is my first article after so long. It is as the esteemed Lao Tzu said, "The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step."

The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."

— Lao Tzu


A Word Of Encouragement And Inspiration

Consider this thought : You are a writer. Or rather, you are an aspiring writer. You are at that early stage in your endeavor when the will and the desire are there, but not the inspiration. The inspiration is missing. Your muse has taken a vacation, which is rather inconvenient since you’ve barely begun the work. You have nothing to write about.

You feel as if your mind is a clean and empty slate, barren but for question marks.

Sometimes, you know what you want to write about but you find the words won’t come. Your thoughts are all over the place. You can’t pin down that one particular thought which shines brighter than the rest but is being elusive. Your thoughts have personality but lack the character you need to give them justice in describing them.

It’s maddening and frustrating because you know you have that particular idea just right there! However, you just can’t reach it deep enough to bring it out into the open. There is a want so intense you feel as if you will implode if you do not fulfill it.

In my own admittedly limited experience as an aspiring writer, when such a situation happens, I find that the best thing to do is to just pick up pen and paper, and write that first sentence. Or, as the case is these days, I would boot up my laptop, open up a new Word Document, and write that random first sentence.

In all seriousness, this works for me, because more often than not, when I begin that first sentence, it is then followed by the next sentence and then the next.

The next thing I know, I will have a whole page, and sometimes even a whole chapter, written up.

Everything flows naturally, as if a dam has been broken inside of me and the water just rushes out. The water cannot be contained and has been waiting for that hole in the wall for a chance to trickle out and then gushes out.

It mystifies me sometimes the capabilities I have in coming up with something spontaneously just because I want to write so much that I in fact do, catching that stray or random thought and building something substantial out of it.

It’s like Yoda says, “Do or do not, there is no try.”

Fictional he might be, but his quote came from someone real out there, I believe, and it is quite wise.

Of course, you try, especially when you know that you have never done it before, and thus lacking both the knowledge and the experience. But in trying, you do, and that is what matters — taking that first step. In short, begin.

Do or do not. There is no try."

— Yoda

Begin Your Journey

I have decided that the key to writing is not to force your mind, but to just let it go, release it to fly freely, and find itself. You, as the helm-master, can later catch it once it has taken flight, and tether it to a grounding force, that which is your Purpose.

If you are a writer, then your main responsibility to yourself, I believe, is to write on subjects which are close to your heart. It is a good start, because you must love what you do, if you are to do it for a long, long time and hope to see growth out of it. And, you love what is close in your heart.

Besides, when you write about things which are close to your heart, then your flighty thoughts won’t go too far away. It will always come back because it already has its home within you.

A writer can then build his or her book on this.

Thus, my fellow writers, to make a sentence, you must start with a word. To make a paragraph, you must start with a sentence. And to make a book, you’re going to need all those words, sentences and paragraphs.

To be a writer, you must first write.

There is nothing to writing. All you do is sit down at a typewriter and bleed.”

— Ernest Hemingway

© 2020 Lynne Samuel

Related Articles