I have tried many forms of writing from web content to magazine articles to covering local government, as well as business writing and marketing materials, and I have co-authored a non-fiction book. By trying so many areas of writing, I have learned three things: (1) what I’m passionate about, (2) what I’m not, and (3) that when I’m working in my area of passion, that’s where I excel.
Often, when we choose a path, we focus more on what we think will gain us the most income, or the most notoriety, or what others have told us we should do. In this life, we’ve been given gifts to use. Gifts that are as much a part of our being as the fingers and toes on our bodies. When we work in the areas of our gifts, that’s when we feel the most at ease; the most successful.
Take for example John Denver, a very successful singer and songwriter before passing away in an airplane crash in 1997. Denver wrote and performed songs reflecting what he was passionate about – nature and the mountains. Though he lived in Aspen Colorado, with many of his songs about the area in which he lived, he had several that were about other mountain areas, as well as life in the country and nature. Try listening to some of his music, it’s clear that he was living his passion and utilizing his gifts. There’s no way he could have crossed over into rock music with the same success. The music he wrote was soulful and beautiful and it reflected him.
When you write in the area you are passionate about, it will come naturally. It will not feel forced. If you are struggling as a writer, take a look inside yourself. Maybe you enjoy reading suspense fiction, but what is really burning inside of you is a non-fiction work. Explore that. Pray first, always, then just start writing your thoughts on the page and see where it takes you. Try keeping a journal for a time and see if anything stands out regarding the direction your writing should take. Above all else, use your gifts. You may not be the most successful, but you will be happier and sometimes that’s enough.