My Great Uncle Leslie Jerman, who was a journalist and broadcaster said to me when I was 10 years old,
“Julie if you want to be a writer you have to write”
I’d asked him how he became a writer, while sitting next to him shortly at a family wedding, one of the few times I actually ever spoke to him face to face.
Shortly after we became pen pals. Corresponding for more than a decade.
I would ask him that question many times, in different ways, and each and every time he would answer it the same.
“If you want to be a writer, Julie, you just have to write”
One time he even sent me a copy of the artists and writers yearbook….to get me off his case. But it all looked too hard.
What would I write, who would take me seriously, surely it takes too long to make any money as a writer.
I wanted someone to give me a leg up, a shortcut, the easy option.
He was right though.
I just had to write.
In 2010 I set up a wordpress blog to write about me experiences as a plus size runner, I knew nothing about blogging and in truth didn’t even see this as real writing…somehow it didn’t count.
In 2013 I self published my first book.
It was a shit book
The ones that come later would be better.
Writing a book is like running a marathon, you can do all the prep you like, but when it comes down to it, you just got to write the damn thing.
I mean I know people get ghost writers, but if you are truly writing your own book there are no shortcuts.
I have been working on a book for 18 months, the focus of it changed when COVID hit in March, and a 40K word manuscript got trashed.
I knew I wanted to publish a book this year but during lockdown it was never going to happen, I could barely think, let alone find time to write.
Yesterday I submitted a 47,930 word manuscript to my editor, but not before having two complete days of throwing my toys out of the pram, and literally crying through the last few chapters.
At the start of October, I relocated to the Greek island of Rhodes, initially for 3 weeks to write this book, my plan to decompress and write in peace, turns out I needed more than 3 weeks to rest and recuperate, and so my trip has now turned into one of 8 weeks.
There are no shortcuts.
As a writer, as a business owner.
There are some tasks that you just have to crack on and get done, and the sooner you face that, the sooner you will get out of your way, stop looking for some golden fucking ticket, and you will indeed grow your business.
It’s exhausting seeing all of the “hacks” and “Secret sauce” and “7 step process” offers pop up on Facebook, promising the 6 and 7 figure dream with a £9.99 product, when the truth is no amount of systems and outsourcing can replace a bit of focus and graft.
YOU HAVE TO DO THE WORK
- The Mindset Work
- The Strategy Work
- The Content Creation Work
- The application of the tactics you are learning
And here’s a truth bomb for you on this Thursday afternoon, while you are buying all of these mini products, and reading all these get rich quick books, or attending every free webinar, watching all the free shite on YouTube, or sitting around scratching your heads trying to work it out yourself, other people are simply getting on with the work.
And you know the hardest piece of work you will ever do in your business?
It is working out who you are.
You…the BIGGEST asset in your business.
And I bet that is a big piece of the puzzle that you keep putting off. Oh, knowing how to do Ad’s that’ll be the thing, hiring a great VA that’ll be the thing, having the right funnel that’ll be the thing.
NO…YOU ARE THE DAMN THING
The other stuff it helps, but it’s not the thing.
And as frustrating as all of this sounds I say this all with love, because I know how much this matters to you, I know how much you want this to work.
But the reality is, it doesn’t need to work
Julie Creffield is a community engagement strategist and business mentor from East London, who specialises in helping small business owners step us as leaders so they can scale their businesses.
Her book “Leading from the Back, how to grow a profitable business without selling out, burning out, or behaving like a dick” is available for preorder now.