Episode 02

Mick Silva

Learning To Appreciate The Process

Mick Silva is a freelance editor and writing coach who has spent nearly 20 years in the Christian publishing industry. He has worked for Focus on the Family Books and WaterBrook & Multnomah, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
Mick Silva is a freelance editor and writing coach who has spent nearly 20 years in the Christian publishing industry. He has worked for Focus on the Family Books and WaterBrook & Multnomah, an imprint of Penguin Random House.
00:00 57:14

Show Notes:02. Mick Silva —Why Writing Is Hard: Learning To Love The Process

I have had the pleasure of working with Mick as a writing coach and editor on my latest manuscript. Mick’s knowledge runs much deeper than book publishing and marketing. Mick deeply understands the challenge of writing and the struggle authors face. This episode is a deep and honest dive into the soul of the writer and why writing is hard.

“There are, it seems, two muses: the Muse of Inspiration, who gives us inarticulate visions and desires, and the Muse of Realization, who returns again and again to say, ‘It is yet more difficult than you thought.’ This is the muse of form. It may be then that form serves us best when it works as an obstruction, to baffle us and deflect our intended course. It may be that when we no longer know what to do, we have come to our real work and when we no longer know which way to go, we have begun our real journey. The mind that is not baffled is not employed. The impeded stream is the one that sings.” — Wendell Berry

Read more: https://onbeing.org/blog/the-vital-obstacles-in-the-creative-process/

Mick strikes an important balance in articulating a kind of heuristic approach to first drafts and a focused and intentional revision process. Writing is more than what we know, but Mick acknowledges we all have to start somewhere. Once we have found a place to start, we have to be sensitive, yielding, and courageous to follow where God is leading.

Mick writes on his blog:

“I’ve long maintained that writing well is one of the hardest things one can do. It requires so much. I’ve justified that by saying the hardest things have the most opportunity to be life-changing. And that’s true. The hardest work is the most trying, but it’s also the truest test of your deepest beliefs. And God knows, we wouldn’t do it if it wasn’t for the promise of that reward. Maybe that’s base self-interest, but I think God takes what he can get. And if it gets us to start writing with God, he delights in taking the work and making it an adventure.

Like discovering unexpected treasure along the way, writing with God is ultimately writing for yourself. You will always be the primary beneficiary. And yet, because he is God, you may find this is also the best way to write for your readers.”

“I write because I don’t know what I think until I read what I say.” — Flannery O’Connor

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