You’re Not a Writer, and You Probably Will Never Likely Be One…Unless…

writer, blogger, writing, blogging

My two year blogiversary is coming up (within 3 months). This also happens to be the same time I started writing or blogging or whatever it’s called these days. To be honest with you, I don’t consider my self a writer at all, but more of a rough-around the edges blogger who speaks his mind. My writing (blogging) works for the majority, and for some not so much. That being said, I really don’t care to appease everyone either.

For nearly two years I blogged about personal finance, bitched about certain topics, and divulged quite a bit about my personal life. Nothing I regret, in fact, looking back now at all the personal things I shared with you, I’m proud of my self that I shared what I did, and stepped outside of the comfort-zone that most other bloggers choose to stay inside. Again, that’s their choice, and nothing wrong with that. But, it does come with its own limits for staying inside a cushy bubble.

Still,  despite over 400 posts written on my own blog, 30+ guest posts, and over 50 staff writing assignments for other larger websites (blogs), I still don’t consider my self a writer. Not because I don’t write, mostly because I don’t truly care to be a full-fledged writer – too many rules – and I’m not the one for rules, because rules are meant to be bent, and sometimes broken. Furthermore, I’ve never written for any major publication, no book, e-book or anything of that serious nature.

However, I do consider my self a “wannabe” writer, which in my books is the level below a writer. Keep in mind, these are my rules, and it works for me. Your vision of a writer or a wannabe may be different. And that’s fine, I’m cool with that, to each to their own I suppose.

Despite many blogs that I’ve read over the years, and the 50+ different personal finance blogs I follow each and every week, I can comfortably say that there’s a lot of potential out there. Yet, despite many great topics covered by some very creative people – very few personal finance bloggers are actual writers or wannabe writers. Majority are “appeasers” as I like to call em, because they stick to safe topics, “how to posts”, “10 ways to save more $$ posts” and other topics that have been written million times over.

If you don’t believe me, I just did a quick test through Google, and typed in the following words, “10 ways to save money”, and in 0.36 seconds Google returned 179,000,000 returns. Why the hell in anyone’s right mind would you want to be post 179,000,001? Nobody gives a shit for that type of post, because there are nearly 180 million posts like that already.

That’s why you’re not a writer now, and you probably will never likely be one…..unless….you change something NOW, TODAY, PRONTO!!

I had a breakthrough 15 months into my blogging journey. Yes, it sadly took me that long to realize that I was a brutal writer (blogger).

It was a simple shift of mind that changed everything, and it’s what you need to do — if people are going to take your work seriously.

The Difference Between Good Writers and the Rest

They are not afraid to step outside of their comfort zone.

They’re ballsy.

They don’t care to appease others through their writing, but instead write to share their writing voice.

They’re NOT afraid of what others think of them.

They believe in themselves.

They write without making excuses or apologies.

That’s what good writers do, and the rest stand on the sidelines and watch. So, you have a choice – change your frig-in ways or stand on the sidelines as others become successful. We, as bloggers should be fortunate enough for the opportunity to earn additional income through a side hustle in which we control how much time we devote to it. Obviously the more time we devote – the greater the results. It’s simple economics, and not much different from anything else we do in life.

Show your confidence, and let your confidence unleash your inner writer. Even if you don’t think you’re an awesome writer (like me), fake it! Who’s going to say that you’re not a good writer? The guy who has a blog like you, and writes in the same niche as you? If that’s the case, just go on and brush your shoulder off. Don’t let one bad apple ruin it for you, because the most beautiful part of blogging is that there are no rules, no judges, no editors, no critics - YOU ARE YOUR OWN CRITIC and YOUR BEST AND WORST ENEMY!

writing, criqiue, editing

How To Become a Writer

Stop writing “How To…” posts.

Stop trying to appease others.

Divulge in your personal life – that’s the one upside that you have over anyone else – that’s what makes you unique.

Trust me, you don’t become a writer when you land that book deal. Today, getting a book deal is easier said than done – spend a few grand, and anyone will publish your book for you. What publishing houses were once (the old boy’s club) are slowly vanishing – print media is vanishing – and online mainstream media is the wave of the future.

You become a writer when YOU decide to become a writer. Nobody else decides for you, but you for yourself. When you let go of certain barriers, stop appeasing others, divulge some of your personal life, and show the middle finger to all the haters out there – that’s when you become a writer.

Now you’re different than the rest, and you’re letting your inner voice come to surface. You become a limitless writer with no rules, boundaries or barriers.

Call me crazy, but what I just told you is true. I delivered the straight goods, so it’s up to you now to make a choice.

Stay inside the cushy bubble and never become a writer OR unleash your inner voice, do the best you can, stop caring what others think and become a writer.

What About Me?

Like I said above, it took me nearly 15 months to realize that I wasn’t a writer worth the screen I type onto. So, I changed, and decided to become a writer by sharing more of my personal life, not worrying what others think or say, and more importantly let my inner voice out in the open to become what I am today – a writer as referred to by most (but a wannabe writer as I refer to my self) that’s blunt, brash, sarcastic, and not afraid to share his true thoughts, feelings, and opinions.

You may have noticed it or maybe not, but my writing style has changed dramatically over the past six months. Sure, I still have some “How To” posts, and “10 ways to save more” posts, because let’s face it, a guy’s gotta make a living, and I’d be lying to say that dollar signs don’t motivate me further. Shit, come to think of it, I can’t think of a bigger motivator than money for me or any other blogger for that matter. That being said though, there have been months that I didn’t earn a single penny and I’m still here without a plan of going away anytime soon.

So, if you like me – that’s great, let’s get acquainted some more, and if don’t like me…well I have three suggestions for you:

  1. Click the “X” button up top and don’t let the door hit you on your way out.
  2. Continue reading in disguise as you hide behind your screen.
  3. Be a good sport, and join the discussion. There’s always room for fresh insight.

In conclusion, I’ll share some solid ballsy, bold, and outspoken posts written by writers:

Add VodkaWe PF Bloggers Are a Self Centered Bunch (73 Comments)

YakezieThe Act Of Writing And Saying What We Do Not Understand (70 Comments) 

Financial SamuraiRenters Should Pay More Taxes (180 Comments)

Unleashed WriterYou Become a Writer When You Say So (Inspirational)

So, are you going to become a writer or the guy who sits on the sidelines and watch the world pass you by?

Cheers!

Eddie

Photo Credit (gregturner, animelife)

Comments

  1. Yo Eddie, thanks for that reminder – I needed it! And hey, you’re not half bad as a writer! :)

  2. I try my best every day to do something quirky and crack a joke or two. I want personal finance to be fun. I still struggle with writing things overly personal, I can OVERSHARE (if that’s possible) so I’m trying to find a balance.

    Another great post about writing from you this week. You are a yoda.
    Lauren @ LBee and the Money Tree recently posted..Before you build a budget-go grocery shopping.My Profile

  3. Well said. One of the best things about having your own blog is the freedom to say whatever the balls you want. Personally, we don’t care what others think. Sure, it is nice if people like what we are writing. If they don’t, no big deal because we enjoy it:)
    Greg@ClubThrifty recently posted..Dealing with Friends: How Much is Too Much to Spend?My Profile

  4. This post was very encouraging to me as I am trying to dig a little deeper and write about more personal or more thought-provoking things. I do want to be known for my quality of writing and uniqueness. Its frustrating though because my blog is still small and relatively unknown to the blogosphere.

    Btw, you are a writer and a good one at that I may add. I enjoy reading your posts. :)
    MakintheBacon$ recently posted..The “Cycle”ology of Bike TransportationMy Profile

    • It’s all about digging a little deeper, obviously you don’t want to share every detail, but the more people know, the more people get hooked, and the more they keep coming back – it’s called being transparent, and what separates those bloggers who are successful from the rest.

  5. Love this post, as usual. Whatever you’re doing keep doing it because you’re definitely one of my favourite of the ‘PF bunch.’ In fact, I don’t even mind your ‘how to’ posts, haha! I’ve hit a roadblock more than once and for the very reasons that you state – I don’t want to sound like everyone else. Still trying to figure out what makes me unique.
    littlefrugalista recently posted..The evolving North American dreamMy Profile

  6. If I could be a blogger without having to write, that would be idea. Personally, I’m in it for the conversations.
    Edward Antrobus recently posted..3 Job Search Tips for Recent GradsMy Profile

  7. I write about how to save money and I’m proud of it because I do it better than almost everyone else out there. I do in depth research, write detailed and lengthy articles, and provide actual practical steps on how to do the things I suggest instead of just rehashing the same generic crap ways to save money every time!

    Like you, I don’t consider myself a real writer either because I’m definitely not professionally trained.

    But, while your busy calling people out, another way to be a real writer is to NOT publish incorrect facts. Do you honestly believe there are 179,000,000 posts on “10 ways to save money”? Sorry to tell you Eddie, but Google lies.

    Have you ever tried getting to that 179,000,000th search result? You can’t, because it’s impossible. I performed that very same search just now and even when including duplicate search results and putting 100 results per page instead of the usual 10 I couldn’t get past the 1000th result. That’s a far cry from 179,000,000!!

    There may be that many web pages that contain some permutation of the words in that search string in Google’s database … but that’s about it. Definitely not anywhere near that number of articles that are actually about 10 ways to save money.

    I know you were just going for that “wow” effect and I agree that there are far too many articles on the subject … but still…
    SavingMentor recently posted..6 Sneaky Supermarket Tricks To Watch Out ForMy Profile

    • Hi SM!
      You do your research VERY WELL, and better than most out there. I won’t disagree with you there, but where I do disagree with you is YOU trying to call me that I wrote the post to call others out. Seriously, not sure what post you read, but you missed mine. I wrote the post from a thought perspective, and to get other bloggers to think. Furthermore, I shared what my road block was for 15 months, and what I’m doing differently that brings me the success I’ve had so far.

      I definitely didn’t call anyone out, there’s enough “hatorade” flowing around in the blogoshphere already, so I ain’t going to become another one. Either way, I succeeded with this post, because like last week’s post, and this week’s – it’s raised eyebrows – you being a great example, that’s the whole point of my post, so I’ll leave it here and rest my case. Thanks for stopping by, your comment is much appreciated! :)

      • “Calling out” was probably the wrong choice of words and many of your points are definitely valid. I too am tired of seeing too much useless crap on the internet. I actually think the internet is a lousy substitute for the older traditional media and journalism. More often than not articles seem to be hastily written with inaccurate poorly verified information and they are just a flash in the pan with no long term staying power. Seems you have to keep churning out the crap to stay relevant in today’s tsunami of words that is the internet.

        Anyway, I think I was just in a bad mood, tired of hearing people complain (even though I pretty much agree). I think the tone of your post also bothered me because it is written as a direct accusation towards the reader implying that anyone who reads this post needs to change their ways and stop writing crappy posts. I know it is just done that way for effect and impact and you don’t honestly believe that every blogger writes crap all the time, but it still bothered me.
        SavingMentor recently posted..6 Sneaky Supermarket Tricks To Watch Out ForMy Profile

  8. I’m really enjoying your honesty. I am trying to write from my perspective, good or bad. That’s what I know. I’m never going to be a Harvard economist. I have been told that I’m very much like Switzerland, so we’ll see if I have the ability to stir up some emotion. I have a few ideas when I get more of the basics under my belt.
    Kim@Eyesonthedollar recently posted..Rental Property Series:Buying Our First Rental PropertyMy Profile

    • Kim!
      Thanks for your positive words.
      It took me 15 months of blogging to fully come out of my shell.
      You’ll know when it happens, however, the sooner you do it, the more success you’ll have.
      Cheers!

  9. I just found your blog this past weekend, and have to say, this is why I subscribed. I like reading blogs that are personal. I’ve read PF blogs for almost 10 years. I know what to do (and what not to, although I’ve never let that stop me…). When I write, my “best” posts are ones that are personal, about my life and my decisions, good, bad, and otherwise.

    A writer? I hope so, I’ve always wanted to be one. A good writer? Maybe not. :) But I’m working on it.
    Kris @ Balancing Money and Life recently posted..Monday Morning Blogging Rant – Please Make It Easy for Me to Read You!My Profile

  10. Interesting. When I saw the title, I was thinking more along the lines of actual skill with words or ability to convey a story. Your post is food for thought. :)
    My Canuck Buck recently posted..Travel Budgeting – How To Improve Your Car’s Gas MileageMy Profile

  11. Well said. It can be touch to step outside your comfort zone but that’s what it takes to write an interesting and engaging post.
    Brian recently posted..My Sony Walkman MP3My Profile

  12. I don’t think I try to appease people but I do try to come up with general “how to” posts. Saying that, I don’t think I’m a writer at all. I’m a math dude and I really suck at writing well.

    Really loved the post, Eddie. You’re definitely a different blogger than most finance blogs I follow and it’s refreshing.
    Jason @ WorkSaveLive recently posted..Recipe: Red Bean Salad with ChickpeasMy Profile

    • Jason, math dudes are some of the smartest dudes around. Thanks for your support, and kind words.
      Words like yours is what makes me come back everyday, and money, and well many other things. But one of the nicest things anyone can get, and that $$$ can’t buy is a positive compliment. Cheers!

  13. As a natural people pleaser, I definitely struggle with this. I want everyone to like me, because hey, it makes me feel good. But I agree that sticking to what you believe, writing what you feel and letting others decide how they feel about it is the way to go. I tried to dabble in this style with a post called “you don’t need a new car”. Thanks for the kick in the ass, definitely needed.
    Jacob @ iheartbudgets recently posted..Michelle’s Frugal Finds: Baby WalkerMy Profile

    • Hi Jacob!
      We are all pleasers to some degree, but we have to pick and choose our pleasing. Some situations are simply not worth it. That being said, I believe in helping and supporting others, but I’m far from a “yes” man, which is a tricky fine line to play when you’re a natural people pleaser.

  14. Jacob stole my answer! I’m a crowd pleaser by nature. I am super sensitive and worry about hurting people’s feelings, upsetting people, etc. One of many things I’ve been trying to overcome lately is my inability to speak my opinion anymore. I used to do so without apology, but now I just play it safe and stay neutral or quiet when people are talking about polarizing subjects. One thing that runs through my head is this; if you don’t say anything, surely you can’t upset anyone and you won’t possibly risk breaking a connection with anyone. However, if you never are passionate about anything, can you ever really MAKE those deep connections with like-minded people? Something to chew on!
    Michelle recently posted..See Elephant RunMy Profile

    • Hi Michelle!
      I think everyone is passionate about something. I know what I’m passionate about in blogging, however that doesn’t stop me from speaking my mind and having my own voice. Deep connections are made in many other ways, not just through what’s written. Most people appreciate straight up honesty, others not so much, but no matter what’s said – it’s always how it’s said. Does my post sound harsh? Yeah, that was the point, and to open eyes up. However, I didn’t point anyone out or called anyone out. Who am I to judge? I just shared what has worked for me, and I even admitted throughout the post that “I’m a shitty writer”.

    • As bloggers in a competitive world of mass media and eHow, we need to write boring, search friendly posts that can be found often times unfortunately.

      But, what I think is a great strategy is employing SEO and then really juicing the content of the article up to your style and not be afraid. We’re all bound to upset someone, so there’s no point being too shy!

      Sam
      Sam recently posted..Yakezie Version 3.0 – Thoughts, Ideas, Solutions WelcomeMy Profile

  15. Eddie, great job with the article and I agree you can not worry about what people think about your writing skills. Nowadays I try to not write “How To” articles on my blog, when I first started I Joined the usual Writing sites to try to make ad money, but I basically have abandoned that simply because I do not have time to write for them. I try to share on my blog as much of me as possible, but as you know I have a blog that really focuses on investing (except for my friends and family that I allow to post) so I try to share my investing knowledge with my own portfolio in mind and since I must tread carefully because of my day job…I do not post much outrageous or edgy stuff….anyway I know I am boring you…lol..but I do have a question for you….
    Why does Sam (Financial Smaurai) get all the credit?…..Just kidding of course..

    Talk to ya soon…

    Joe
    J. A. Saglimbeni recently posted..The Best Advice I Can Give To Young WorkersMy Profile

    • Hi Joe!
      Thanks for the positive words.
      I should say this upfront…you’re never boring me. There’s no such thing as boring for me. Boring for me is when I don’t give a shit about something or someone’s comment for that matter. Obviously, I care about yours, and appreciate yours (and everyone else’s) 30 seconds of their time of the day that they dedicated to write the comment.

  16. Sometimes I think this in my head>>>>This is my blog, my life, words coming out of my trap, typed on the screen. No one told you that you had to stay so go throw a wobbler somewhere else. Then they take my words and turn them arse about tit and I think to myself, “what are you going on about”. Most times (only been a couple so far really) but it’s just complete rubbish so I just move on as I know you can’t please everyone even though you want to tell them to put a sock in it.

    The reality is that I am still learning, and I find it’s hard for people to understand my British humour in Canada and give me crap over it. I get miffed trying to explain myself.. over and over when I am being myself, what I’m used to. Life doesn’t have to be serious all the time. That’s the power of words, where some people understand the meaning different then the next person. I don’t want to change for anyone but I do try to keep my posts on the UK down low sometimes. I have the “how to” posts because people do come to my blog in search for these posts and if that’s what they fancy and stay, that’s great. I am grateful for every one of my fans.

    I add my own humour and hope that others can laugh along with me. Crikey it’s taken me 5 years now to not give a monkeys what people thought of me when I opened my trap in public.

    How many times people asked me to repeat myself like I was talking a foreign language. It’s not easy but heck I’m just a bloke blogging putting in a lot of elbow grease. Money is not motivating me (at the moment) only helping my fans and I’m happy as Larry. A writer maybe not, perhaps more like the great gazoo in one’s ear! Great post mate. Mr. CBB
    Canadianbudgetbinder recently posted..Save Money On Your Next Mortgage TransactionMy Profile

  17. As bloggers in a competitive world of mass media and eHow, we need to write boring, search friendly posts that can be found often times unfortunately.

    But, what I think is a great strategy is employing SEO and then really juicing the content of the article up to your style and not be afraid. We’re all bound to upset someone, so there’s no point being too shy!

    Sam

    • To clarify, I mean to say “we need to employ boring SEO friendly post TITLES” to compete sometimes, otherwise, our articles will never be “found”.

      Writing with personality is what really differentiates good blogs with Ho hum blogs. I enjoyed reading this post and see you push the edge.

  18. Jana @ Daily Money Shot says:

    I really enjoyed this post. I definitely consider myself a writer, and I don’t think I totally suck at it. My blog is very personal because I don’t know how to be a different way. I’m not afraid of my opinions and thoughts, and while I know my blog isn’t for everyone (and probably never will be), I’m proud and happy with it. Because it’s all me.

    Finding your voice as a writer is hard and I think it’s always developing. But once you find it, like a puppy learning to bark, you just keep practicing until it’s gets louder and truly becomes your own.
    Jana @ Daily Money Shot recently posted..Are your financial prejudices fair?My Profile

  19. I’m first time here and such a great start for me. I have never thought before to stop writing “how to” articles ’cause it drives the traffic to the blog.
    In other side, it drives less comments as I see than “personal story” articles. need to think more on this.
    Alexander Collins recently posted..5 Forex Trading Techniques for a Newbie Which Are Often OverlookedMy Profile

  20. I enjoyed this post, the title caught my attention. I blog and I write, whats the difference who knows. But the point is to share your voice and be unique or else you will never get recognized.
    RichUncle EL recently posted..How I started BloggingMy Profile