If you’re a word hustler like me (read: marketing writer), you’re putting in long hours of workworkworkworkwork on your wordswordswordswordswords. At times, even at an upbeat company like Wix, the marketing matrix can be overwhelming. So the next time you feel like you’re too deep in the rabbit hole, get inspired by these quotes from one of my favorite movies.
Whoa. Like The Matrix, the spoon is your reality. In reality, there are no “good” or “bad” writing tasks; there’s only your attitude about the project and that is the one thing you are 100% in control of. When you approach tasks — from scripting a spot featuring a stellar influencer, to drafting 100s of expanded text ads for your company’s Google AdWords campaign — the mindset of positivity and ownership makes all the difference. Learn to bend, be flexible and tackle each assignment with an open mind.
When the going gets tough, it’s hard not to look back and reminisce about a time when you felt you had more control. Imagine a big marketing campaign. After the kickoff meeting, you’re pumped. You love the partner, are onboard with the messaging and feel empowered as the writer. The possibilities seem infinite. Further down the tunnel — as stakeholders weigh in, design needs content changes and the partner has their own list of non-negotiables — that red pill may seem quite attractive. Keep in mind, the path to final approval is paved with many revisions. Hang in there and stick with it. There is no spoon, remember?
Has your writing come to a halt (and not because of an issue with your Bluetooth)? Sometimes writer’s block stems from not asking the right questions from the get-go. Before you dive into drafting content, it’s your job to truly understand the messaging, audience and goals of the brief. This means asking the right questions. No one can fault you for getting your facts straight, but they can for being ignorant.
Just like the captivity of mankind in The Matrix, writers need to unplug and reboot. Man cannot survive on writing alone! Yes, we’re creatures of structure and routine, but we don’t always have to be. Sometimes a restart or full-on mental shutdown, is exactly what your creative OS needs. Acknowledge it. Unplug, man. And log back in when you’re ready.
Withholding from yourself? Shame. S-H-A-M-E (yea, that’s a GOT reference). Remember how you ended that toxic relationship because your SO didn’t let you be you? This is the same thing and it shows in your writing. Denying your literary impulses, at least when it comes to the initial draft, is death (gasp!). Dropping self-edit and self-censorship bombs before you even get your words to the Google Doc is the surest way to kill that writing vibe. The key to good writing is authenticity. The key to authenticity is trusting your gut. Leave the rest to revisions and a good editor.
Truth! Oftentimes as writers, the biggest obstacle we have to overcome is ourselves. This includes separating work writing from personal writing projects, making time to do to the things that nurture and inspire creative growth and overcoming personal insecurities about whether or not we’re even good at “the craft.” Writing is hard. Writing well is harder. Writing something memorable, something we’re genuinely proud of, something that earns us the credo “Voice of a Generation” — next level. But the thing is, you just gotta do it. Create separate spaces for work and side projects. Make time for that morning run to clear your mind or the MasterClass screenwriting workshop you registered for with Sorkin. And to all those naysaying synapses talking shit at the watercooler of your mind, let it all go and set that authentic voice of yours free.
While most of us probably don’t know Kung Fu, it’s important to acknowledge and embrace the things we do know about ourselves — from the talents we’re most proud of to the flaws we wish we could command+Z. Open up the vault and take inventory of your skillset — the good, the bad and the outliers on either side. Know who you are and what you bring to your writing. Chances are you’ll be quite surprised by your strengths and discover new opportunities for personal and professional growth.
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