14. They Don’t Grow. Most authors will deny that, but when I read what they’ve written I don’t see much difference from book to book. If we’re growing, our writing quality keeps up with us.
We need to learn and keep on learning. Make it your goal to be the best you can. I don’t expect to be the most celebrated writer of my time; I do expect to be the most celebrated Cec Murphey I can be.
Growing professionally means an unrelenting search for excellence—an uncompromising attempt to improve—a compulsion to be the best you can be. (Quite redundant, but it’s so you can grasp how important I consider the unrelenting search for excellence.)
Here are a few suggestions to help you improve.
- Join or form an editing group. Editing groups edit, which is why I use the term. Pay attention to the suggestions from others and surprise yourself with how much you can learn. I stayed with my editing group, the Scribe Tribe, for nine years. Even though most of them knew less about publishing than I did, I still learned from them.
- Covenant with at least one other writer that will push you—not to finish a book or article, and not to get it sold, but to make each piece the best writing you can do at this stage of your development.
- Pray every day for God to help you improve. If you’re not a serious writer you’ll stop praying. If you are, it will become a part of each day. And even if you don’t believe in prayer, call it self-talk because what we say to,ourselves and continue to say to ourselves helps us fulfill those words.
I don’t ever expect to feel fully pleased with my writing.
I know I can get better.