3 Tips For Women Writers on Valentine's Day

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Valentine's Day is a difficult day for so many people. I debated what to write about today--it seems as if our scheduled WOW blogging day is a holiday, we must have something profound to say! It is a lot of pressure. I thought about posting about my favorite Valentine's picture books or romance novels, but then I decided that although The Muffin is mostly about writing and books, it's also about being a woman writer. And with being a woman writer comes worrying about love and celebrating Valentine's Day.
A lot of lovely friends to be thankful for! 

I've had my share of lonely Valentine's Days and February fourteenths where I wasn't alone, but felt that way anyway. One could argue that writers often have trouble because we dramatize real life, with feeling things very deeply and being sensitive. But I also think writers, especially fiction writers, are very good with their imagination and with creative thinking. So the Valentine's Day "alone" problem can be solved somewhat with creativity and imagination. If you're finding yourself feeling sad, lonely, uncreative, or unmotivated on Valentine's Day, let's look at some things you can do--that I've done myself--that could make a difference today and many more days to come.

1. Look for the love that is in your life: Valentine's Day is about love--but not necessarily romantic love. You can celebrate the love between friends and family members or the love for your children. You can even focus on the love for a pet. Even better, how about the love you have for your writing time? If writing is your love and passion, then make sure to give yourself time to work on your writing today.

2. A Heart of Gratitude: More and more, I am learning that gratitude can change attitudes and make life bearable when it seems chaotic. Every night, thanks to some good advice I decided to follow, my daughter and I list three blessings for our day. Some days, my blessings include my house and electricity; and some days, I can be more specific about good things that happened to me, including writing and editing opportunities that I am grateful for. Often, my blessings are that I am spending time with my daughter and my dog.

Sometimes, I'm thankful for cupcakes! 

I want to introduce you to a terrific blog and resource about mindfulness and gratitude called We Bold Souls. I was lucky enough to hear Angela, who runs the company, give a presentation at my MOPS group, and then I signed up for her newsletter. At the presentation, she talked about the research that has been done on the positive effects of having a grateful attitude, and the evidence is overwhelming that gratefulness can change your life. If you aren't so weighed down with whatever troubles that are weighing you down, do you think your writing could improve? Or the energy for your writing? In my opinion, it's worth a shot. If nothing else, you can be grateful to live in a world where there are so many opportunities for women to share their opinions and allow their voices to be heard through publication.

3. Journaling: I believe in the power of journaling on a regular basis, even though my own journaling is often done as a sporadic practice. But anytime I've allowed myself to take one of Mari McCarthy's self-paced journaling courses or read a book with questions at the end of chapters, where I wrote the answers in a notebook, I have grown as a person. Just reading or thinking or talking is not as powerful for me or doesn't stick with me as long as actually writing down my feelings--I'm sure it's because I'm a writer. But if you're feeling sad and lonely on Valentine's Day, try journaling about it. No one has to read it. You can even tear it up when you are done. You never know where those written down thoughts might take you.

We at WOW! are a community of supportive women writers, but we also support each other as women. We try to timely respond to all comments and responses on our social media pages; so please, if you're feeling down, try one of these methods above or reach out to us on social media. And if you're celebrating love in your life today, then we hope it brings you great joy!

Me and a special guy! 
Margo L. Dill is a writer, editor, writing coach and instructor, living in St. Louis with her daughter and her boxer dog. Find out more about her on her website, Look to the Western Sky, or in the WOW! classroom.  


Sioux Roslawski said...

Margo--Yes, holidays like this are built up by card companies and florists. There are better ways to celebrate them and simply ignoring them (for some people) is an okay thing, too. (It's just another day, anyway.)

Margo Dill said...

Yes, and staying off of social media that day also works! :)

Angela Mackintosh said...

What beautiful photos! :) I know, holiday blogging always makes me feel like I have to say something important. For a while there Marcia was scheduling me for Christmas and New Years! I think we put that all on ourselves though. Lol. Your post is perfect. :) I love the message of gratitude and your MOPS group sounds really inspiring from everything you've mentioned about it over the past year or so. Thank you for the post, Margo! Love you and the entire WOW community! :) <3

Margo Dill said...

Thanks, Ang! Love you, too. :) I think most pressure is writers putting it on ourselves.

Pamela Kenney said...

Thank you for writing about this Margo! Holidays are difficult for so many people, especially when each "special day" becomes more and more hyped up by advertisers and retailers.
I love your idea of taking a step back and realizing when we have to be grateful for, which is a lot.

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