Writing Without Support

  • By: Jessica Faust | Date: Sep 17 2020

Writing is a solitary and often isolating vocation. Even more so when you don’t have the support of friends and family.

I was lucky when I started BookEnds, my closest family supported me. I can’t say the same unfortunately about all the people in my life. In fact, I can think of at least one friend I lost partly because of BookEnds.

We can’t really explain why people can’t or won’t support us. I chalked some of it up to jealousy. With other people, it seemed like they were upset they couldn’t control me, or maybe that I was doing something they couldn’t understand.

I’m not sure why your friends and family don’t support your writing and at the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter. It’s not your problem to solve. The only concern you have is taking care of yourself and that includes finding the support you deserve.

Finding Support

If your sister doesn’t seem to want to hear about your book or promote it to her friends and family so be it. Instead of obsessing over a lack of support, focus on those people who are giving it.

Writers groups can be among the most supportive people I’ve ever met. If you haven’t had the pleasure of attending a national writing award ceremony in person I suggest you search for them on YouTube. Listen to the cheers an author gets from their critique partners and instantly you’re going to know where the real support comes from.

Friends and family don’t always understand the writing or publishing process and maybe they’re not meant to. Maybe this lack of support you’re feeling is the push you need to take your writing to the next level and find the group who will be there for you.

It hurts when we don’t find support from those closest to us. You should give yourself time to grieve that, but you should not let it control you. Finding another group, finding your people, will not only boost you up, but it might just give those naysayers the time they need to come around.

2 responses to “Writing Without Support”

  1. Avatar Iris says:

    In 2013, I quit my career, sold most of my stuff and started a new life in Japan. Most of my friends and colleagues were excited for me and very supportive.

    However, my favourite uncle just couldn’t wrap his mind around it: “How can you just go to a strange country and never come back?” He had lived and worked in the same small town all his life and simply couldn’t understand why I wanted out.

    Sometimes when people don’t support you, it may also be that they worry you might get hurt. They know (or imagine) that not many people succeed in your chosen path and they’d rather you never start than you having to experience the pain of quitting half way.

    My advice: Do it anyway. Even if you don’t succeed, you will have learnt something new. And that’s always worth the journey.

  2. I think telling a close friend or relative you’re a writer (before your book is ever published) is like admitting to being a hoarder. Your admission drops between you two like a twenty pound sack of rotting sweet potatoes. You both know the sack is there, but you ignore it until your friend changes the subject. Most folks do not know what to do with such alarming news.