It all began five years ago.
In the dark of night, with nothing but the glow of the laptop illuminating the room, I stared at the screen with my hands suspended over the keyboard and tears streaming down my face.
Writing had typically come easy for me before then, but it all came to a screeching halt that day. All because a few people in my life had told me a few horror stories about trying to make a living as a writer, which had struck me so hard in my soul that I was now terrified of writing anything else.
And now, as I cried, worried that my hands would never produce a single word again, I knew it wasn't really the people that had shaken me. It was about the bigger problem:
If I can't make it as a writer, what else do I have to give to the world?
I was (and still am) pretty much terrible at everything else. I knew I couldn't just turn around and learn a new trade, or get a new hobby, because no one ever "chooses" to be a writer. It's not a choice, it's a destiny.
Of course, there are times when writing isn't fun. It's like entering a blood stained arena without armour, clutching nothing but your tattered manuscript and having to battle through competing gladiators and lions. There's so much at stake, so much anguish and torment in the process. But I've never wanted anything else, because I know that entertaining through words is the most impactful way I can leave my mark on this earth.
When I thought about the life I'd have to live if I gave into my fears and gave up writing, I couldn't BREATHE.
It was unthinkable. I had to figure out a solution or I knew I wouldn't survive - so for me, there was no other option.
I didn't want to feel that way. I wanted to wholeheartedly believe in myself again. I wanted to be unstoppable. I could either sit there and let the fears get the best of me, or I could psych myself up, and find a way to ensure that I NEVER felt so helpless or disempowered ever again.
As I sat in front of that keyboard, flexing my fingers over the keys, willing something - anything - to come out onto the paper, I had the most important revelation.
Nothing about my ability had changed. The rate at which I could produce work hadn't changed.
Nothing had changed except the way I felt, and that had changed everything.
Forget grammar books, critique workshops and traditional writing methods for a second, and consider this: all writing issues emotional, and the only person holding you back is you.
Nothing had changed except the way I felt...and I was ready to change it back.
What I produced then became my guiding philosophy for everything I now stand for. It is the comprehensive, step-by-step guide to removing the emotional barriers preventing you from leading the life you're destined to lead. It is the EXACT process that has lead me to write over 160 more stories, poems and plays, win national awards and feel confident and fulfilled in my work every single day.
And it's called The Authorship Program®.
On November 21st 2014, I started the book without a clue what I wanted to say or how. All I have is a desperate desire to stop writers and creatives feeling so bad about themselves, and eventually the words start getting channeled through me. Writing it was a long process of self-therapy, where I simply coached myself out of the emotions I didn't want to feel. All I wanted was to get back to who I was before, the person without fear, the person I know call the #wholewriter, the person inside me (and all of us) who is not afraid.
On January 5th 2014, it was complete. I enlisted the help of some of my closest friends in the writing community who were more than happy to beta test, and word started spreading about this awesome new lifestyle idea for writers.
On May 10th 2014, The book launched with a LIVE cover reveal - and three 12-hour launch parties on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. In the time leading up to the launch I shared free lessons, quotes, printables, worksheets and prizes.
In June 2014, I start getting heartfelt emails from writers who love the material, but wish there was more hands-on support and community to go with it. I start working on the online version of the program!
From June 2014 to April 2016, The book becomes a success by all my standards, at least. I’ve gotten stories everyday from writers telling me how the program has changed their lives that have me in happy tears.
In May 2016, I add the finishing touches to the online program… which has been a looong time coming, and only now do I feel that it's finally fully baked and ready to serve writers.
The blog you're reading now was/is a completely different beast, and has had several iterations with lots of stops and starts along the way, while I figured out what I truly wanted this movement to look like. The message however has almost always been the same, and now with this as my signature program it's all finally ready to be presented to the world.
Over the past few years, so many extraordinary events have lead me to where I am with the movement today.
I'm hoping it's the end of an era for the writers of the world who have ever felt alone... and the beginning of the self-care movement, the holistic health movement, the #wholewriter movement.
And I can’t wait for you to join me.
Stephanie Lennox is an award-winning author, keynote speaker, holistic writing coach and wellness advocate. She’s also the founder of The Authorship Program®, a 12-week immersive experience that helps writers conquer fear in their creative lives. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Please share this post: