Dig deep

17 Sep

My desire to write a book has been tugging at me a lot recently. I can’t think of anything more gratifying than accomplishing this goal. It’s been something I have wanted to do since I was 20. It’s always been one of those “one day I will” goals. Like “one day I will” fly to the moon. Six months into writing this blog, I wrote a book proposal for 365 til 30. I was pretty proud of this 50 page document at the time. I thought I did a pretty good job considering I had never written a book proposal before. I thought it was where it needed to be. But now when I look at it I realize that I only scratched the surface. Actually, I’ve only dragged a tiny sewing needle across the surface of it. There is still so much that needs to be explored. This new-found realization both excites me and terrifies me. I think the biggest question that needs answering isn’t…why was my life was such a mess when I turned 29?

Knowing that I needed some inspiration and guidance, I reached out to a writer friend whom I admire and respect greatly. She’s so damn smart and honest that I just knew she’d help me unlock something. We spent a few hours talking about my book and I left feeling inspired. Her notes to me were simple- Dig deep when writing my book, be willing to go to the places that scare me and get in a writing class so I can be surrounded by other writers.

I immediately went home and scoured the internet in search of a writing class that suited my needs. I finally stumbled upon a class called “Memorable Memoir” and thought it sounded perfect, so I signed up and my first class is tonight. I think this most definitely constitutes a new “artist date” with myself, don’t you think?

I’m excited to see what will come from this experience.

Lastly, I want to share Cheryl Strayed’s advice to writers because I just love it. I plan on reading it every single morning until I have a finished book in my hands.

1. Write a lot.
2. Don’t be in a hurry to publish.
3. Find the work that moves you the most deeply and read it over and over again. I’ve had many great teachers, but the most valuable lessons I learned were from writers on the page.
4. Be brave. Write what’s true for you. Write what you think. What about what confuses you and compels you. Write about the crazy, hard, and beautiful. Write what scares you. Write what makes you laugh and write what makes you weep. Writing is risk and revelation. There’s no need to show up at the party if you’re only going to stand around with your hands in your pockets and stare at the drapes.


21 Responses to “Dig deep”

  1. FringeGirl September 17, 2012 at 10:15 am #

    Love that last line of advice.


  2. Erin Haslag (@WELLinLA) September 17, 2012 at 10:23 am #

    As a fellow writer feeling that “tug” and uncertainty all at the same time I so love hearing of your journey. And think that we still need that cup o’ coffee just to catch up and support, encourage one another in this area of life goals!

    P.S. How was the weekend hike in your new shoes?!?

  3. maternalmedia September 17, 2012 at 11:30 am #

    You do it first! And then I will learn from you (buy your book) and follow!

  4. rachel September 17, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

    this is great kate. im so excited for you! there is more information in your head then you know. making an outline could help! (that always helps me) Starting with the big questions and jotting down everything that comes up. I can’t wait to see your book on shelves someday! It gives me shivers just thinking about it!!


  5. rachel September 17, 2012 at 12:28 pm #

    P.S. I hope you will let me design it’s cover 🙂

  6. becca3416 September 17, 2012 at 12:33 pm #

    You already have your foot much farther in the door than you think! Writing a book is a huge wonderful dream a lot of us have. Go you!

  7. sarahannnoel September 17, 2012 at 1:33 pm #

    Such, such good advice. I’m in the middle of my second book attempt–I have a lit agent this time and it’s made ALL the difference with the proposal writing as well as having an editor sort of “on-hand” to bounce ideas off of. Good luck with your class–that sounds like such an inspiration!

  8. free penny press September 17, 2012 at 1:34 pm #

    Write on!!.. I actually started a book this summer (more a novella) and am so proud of myself for starting.. The writers group sounds wonderful and I’m sure your book will come to fruition when it’s ready to be born. Best of luck!! 🙂

  9. M. M September 17, 2012 at 4:03 pm #


  10. gregorychankins September 17, 2012 at 4:12 pm #

    I like the advice to writers. Those four points carry a lot of weight (and a lot of lightness, interestingly enough). But I also really like the direction and motivation you have for your own writing. It’s not easy. I’ve been working on it for years, so it’s nice to see someone who’s not afraid to jump into that river called The Writer. Let it sweep you away, Kate. Looking forward to that first Kate McClafferty BOOK!

  11. Rebecca Koo September 18, 2012 at 10:48 am #

    I love it. You have so much to offer. I believe in you. You have a lot of really valuable stuff inside you to dig for. I can’t wait to see what you uncover and discover in this process. I can’t wait to read it…..
    And I can’t wait to hear how the writing class goes!

  12. cravesadventure September 18, 2012 at 2:07 pm #

    Thanks so much for sharing the Wisdom of Writing:) Good Luck & Enjoy Your Class! I love your writing flair, so keeping digging for sure!

    • katemcclafferty September 19, 2012 at 12:01 pm #

      Thank you so much for your positive energy!! I appreciate your kind words:)

  13. whenselahsleeps September 18, 2012 at 9:47 pm #

    “Be brave. Write what’s true for you”. This is just what I needed to read. Thanks for sharing.

    • katemcclafferty September 19, 2012 at 12:00 pm #

      Isn’t that line just the best? Love Cheryl Strayed

  14. miss1sue September 19, 2012 at 4:59 am #

    Well hello there fellow dancer! I nominated you for the Liebster Award 🙂 you can see my post here: http://dolacotidiana.wordpress.com/2012/09/19/exqueese-me-and-www/

  15. righteousbruin9 September 19, 2012 at 11:14 am #

    #4 especially resonates with me. Go as deeply into your heart as you feel comfortable doing.

  16. Sharzad Kiadeh (@LuxLyfe) September 19, 2012 at 4:07 pm #

    I know how you feel! BUT- it sounds like you have already come a long way! Remember all the baby steps that are part of your journey! ; )

  17. fivereflections September 19, 2012 at 11:39 pm #

    I’d read your novel…

  18. Linds September 23, 2012 at 6:17 pm #

    I totally get it! Great advice. Good luck with everything.

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