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  #1  
Old 02-26-09, 11:39 AM
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Lightbulb Any writers out there?

I've been struggling to find 'normal' jobs that I qualify for (which is pretty much waitress) but loved writing when I was younger. I don't enjoy creative writing as much anymore, but a friend of mine who writes kids' nonfiction has been bugging me for ages to try it out.

So I am. I'm writing a nonfiction book on hearing and the ear for kids. :P LOL. It's probably overdone, but what I'm finding out is that I LIKE it. I LIKE the research. I LIKE having to break it down to simplest terms. I like having to find analogies kids will understand or enjoy, I like the writing itself (as I can be sort of goofy and use some EXCELLENT puns!) and it all sort of scares me.

Oh God. I'm going to be a writer. I'm going to write children's books as a living. OH NOES D: IT'S WHAT MY MOTHER ALWAYS TOLD ME TO AVOID!

Not really. But the idea of enjoying this so much does frighten me. Is it really that easy? Can I really just START writing and woosh, there goes my career taking off??

And, what if I'm no good at it? What if I can't handle the unstructured schedule? It makes me nervous but at the same time I like the idea, because I could stay at home with our dogs, it'd let me do a little housework every day (if I had to leave the house for a job, I never have time to clean before or after!), and it works more with my anxiety.

Could it reeeaaaallly be that simple? *boggling*
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Old 02-26-09, 12:12 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

Very interesting subject.

Like yourself, I found out through unconventional means that I did have a talent for writing. Not novels or stories, because my imagination is not vivid enough to be THAT creative, but informative writing. I never knew I had this talent because I was only an average student in school and never pursued a higher education.

Because a job I had that required me to communicate to large groups of people through email, I discovered through their feedback that my writing style was very easy to comprehend. I had the ability to take complex subjects and translate them into layman's terms in a manner that did not offend the intelligence of the reader, but just helped them to understand the topic much more easily.

The best compliment I ever received from these people was time and again hearing "Thanks! I GET it now! Was it always this simple?".

After building my confidence, I took the initiative to write a manual for our front line employees on the cost processes of our company. My reasoning was that the people who were serving our products had the MOST impact on our costs because they were the last line of defense before the items went out the window, yet they knew nothing of how our company controlled costs or how much impact each one of them had in keeping our costs in line or blowing them through the roof. Once they read the manual and were able to see in real numbers how vitally important they were to our entire operation, they felt better about themselves and took ownership of their jobs.

Well, little did I know beforehand, but it took off and became standard training for not only all of our hourly employees, but our managers as well. I won't name the company, but you all know it very well and have probably been there. They employ over 65,000 people, so this was a HUGE confidence booster for me.

However, as with most ADDers, I couldn't maintain that level of performance because the rest of the job was repetitious and mind-numbing, involving compiling numbers and statistics all day, every day......a career death sentence for the classic ADDer.

What it did do for me was make me realize that I do have a lot of talent. The only sticking point was the fact that I couldn't tap it without some serious incentive. That just doesn't work in the day to day world.

Anyway, I do understand what you mean and I encourage you to continue to do it to whatever end. If you sell a book and make a million, GREAT! If you don't, you can at least pick it up and read it as an affirmation of your abilities and self-worth. Often times that is enough for many of us.

Speaking of children, here's a video I made from a song I wrote for inner city students. The song is called "Alphabet Rap" and it is a big hit at the local elementary school where my girlfriend teaches. The kids are really into it because it speaks to them on their level and is interesting enough to get them to actually learn something! lol

Good luck in your writing endeavors and I expect to see you on the NY Times Bestseller list in the next year or so!

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Old 02-26-09, 02:01 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

I wonder if we ADDers are so accustomed to life being so tough to deal with that when an obvious answer comes along we dismiss it as too easy.
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Old 02-26-09, 02:19 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

FinallyAnswered: I think the 'breaking it down' part is really what I enjoy most. I'm not trying to write to kids, really, just trying to keep it as simple as possible while maintaing the integrity of the concept.

Congrats on doing so well with that manual!! I wish you much success as your career progresses.


firstdesserts: Seriously! I really think that's what happens. o.o
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Old 02-26-09, 02:33 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

Self-employment is one of those rare opportunities where you get to work as hard as you want to and then some.
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Old 02-26-09, 08:43 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

Kettish, I write for a living. Always interesting and sometimes difficult. Generally, I write information articles about technology.

Recently, I started writing a book for children about ADHD. Kids need to be able to see themselves in a positive light or they begin to shrink. I want to be able to reach out to kids that don't have a way to see themselves in a positive light.

Working from home is tough but it can be done. I am fortunate that I have an office that is an office. It is used for work. When I am done with working, I can close the door and walk away. I know I have posted about how I manage working from home but if you want tips, feel free to PM.

Congratulations on finding your passion. So many people never do.
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Old 02-26-09, 09:31 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

I scored an 800 on the new writing section of the SAT. Twice. And I scored in the 99th percentile on the verbal section of the PSAT (only about top 3% on SAT verbal). And I can tell you one thing: I can't write. I did manage to gain entrance into Emory University, though. I work all the time. My passion is biology. I actually registered for this site to give myself something else to do besides study. (unedited)

If you just read the above paragraph, I think you might see the problem that many ADDer's have with writing. We are just too scattered-brained. Although that is not to say you do not have the ability to make something of yourself, I think you will have to work harder than other people.

Hard work has been my life's philosophy. And it has taken me far. As someone with ADD, expect to have to want it more. But nature almost always rewards determination, just like it bequeaths to the undeserving indiscriminately against the deserving. There are just some great things that you can count on. And having your hard work rewarded is one of them.

Work hard enough, and I think you can improve your chances significantly of becoming a writer.
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Old 02-26-09, 11:08 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

heterozygote, I was blessed with a love of reading and a mother who was an English teacher. Fortunately I can write well when I put my mind to it; when I'm writing posts for these forums, or my own blog/use, I don't both keeping it as 'neat and tidy' as I would with formal writing. Additionally, children have minds that are better at keeping up with the side tracks and trips between main points. If I get TOO off topic, I put it in a side bar or a 'Did you know?' style offset and I'm good!

The best part about this is, of course, that since it's nonfiction, all I'm doing is essentially condensing, rewording, and reorganizing. Oddly enough I'm fairly good at that on paper, and so far that bit has gone well!

No, where the hard work will catch me in the behind is the 'at home' part. I have a hard time regulating myself work-wise when I'm at home so I'm going to have to come up with a better system. Additionally I have a bit of social anxiety, which leads me to stutter and sound unprofessional over the phone or on first impression.

ADHDTigger, boy, have I got some talking to do with you! I'll be PMing you shortly. And, hey, you took my idea! LOL.
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Old 02-26-09, 11:09 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

PS-heterozygote...I would've never guessed you like biology.
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Old 02-26-09, 11:18 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

"Could it reeeaaaallly be that simple?"

Sure it could be that simple - that doesn't mean it's easy. But if it was too easy you'd get bored real quick I think. And the fact that this is your passion makes it worth every minute you spend on doing it!

I felt the exact same way when I started painting again. The painting came naturally - it was the commitment that challenged me at first. I found that in the beginning, I didn't have to make it be a huge thing - I would commit to show up for 1/2 hour and that's it. I knew that if I wanted to leave after 1/2 hour I could, and it freed me up from any negative finger pointing pressure I might put on myself. Knowing myself how I do, I knew that if I was in for 1/2 hour, I was probably going to get lost in what I was doing and end up working for four hours. But committing for 4 hours at first felt a little overwhelming. It really worked like a charm, and before long I could easily set hours for myself. I still use that occasionally when I'm feeling resistant.


"And, what if I'm no good at it? What if I can't handle the unstructured schedule? It makes me nervous but at the same time I like the idea, because I could stay at home with our dogs, it'd let me do a little housework every day (if I had to leave the house for a job, I never have time to clean before or after!), and it works more with my anxiety."

We're not doing next year or even next week yet - we're only doing today. Try not to worry about what might happen. Just start, and keep putting one foot in front of the other. All you need to do is keep showing up - see where it takes you!
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Old 02-26-09, 11:32 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

novagal-I laughed in a great way when I read your post! You're so right. I used to take everything one day at a time naturally, but when I got married there got to be so much planning involved...and once I started taking meds, if I didn't plan, I ended up doing something inane for hours!

I like the way you're talking about it though. I think I'll just say that I've got to get one room picked up/one chore done in the morning, set aside time for the dogs' care, and the rest of the day I can write or I can clean some more.
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Old 02-27-09, 01:03 AM
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Re: Any writers out there?

Hmmmmm,

So it finally sinks in! Such a large part of why this forum has been so addicting is that it allows me to write! I am so dense! Well, this has been good practice. There's a semi-autobio story about a singer who loses her hearing I've been toying with for a while. Now if I look up a list of diseases that effect hearing...
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Old 02-27-09, 10:31 AM
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Re: Any writers out there?

D: Dude, GIVE ME THAT LIST when you're done!!! Or I can do vice versa! I've already got that slotted for research for my book. I'm just waiting on emails back from people I contacted for interviews...

Out of curiosity, do you know what particular problem the singer had?
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Old 02-27-09, 07:52 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

Huh?!
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Old 02-27-09, 08:44 PM
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Re: Any writers out there?

The list of diseases that affect hearing. I'm writing my book on hearing. You're writing your book on a singer with hearing problems.

It's all part of a vast design...

LOL. What I meant was, you mentioned coming up with a list of hearing problems for your book. I'm already planning on doing research on that for my book. Maybe we could compare notes.
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