Do you ever find yourself talking to a friend and suddenly you have one of those epiphany moments where they help something just click for you? I had one such conversation this weekend.
I consider myself incredibly fortunate to have the kind of friends who are just constant cheerleaders of me and our other friends. Having such a solid support system is crucial for me, as I’m a real “words of affirmation” love language type of girl, and their belief in me spurs me to do better and do more. They have a way of encouraging me so well that I actually start to believe in my own crazy dreams. Which leads me to my latest epiphany.
A lot of bloggers and writers I follow are full of words of wisdom for other writers. They have tips and tricks, writing prompts, writing retreats, etc. All the things to help other writers. And while I don’t have anything against helping other writers, I honestly just don’t know how and don’t feel like that’s something I’m really meant to do. I am however, really passionate about helping others in general. If I can impact your life in a positive way, I want to do that thing. And after a really fun little writing assignment I took on over the weekend, my friend helped me realize a really practical way I can do that.
For most of my 10+ year career, in one way or another, I’ve done a lot of writing on behalf of other people.
We call this “ghostwriting” in my world, and it’s one of my favorite things. I sit down with other people and ask them to tell me their stories, or share what they want to say and the points they hope to get across, and then I write it for them. Usually for something like a magazine or job application. Not because they’re incapable or don’t have time. It’s more about each of us using the gifts we’ve been given.
Writing is one of my gifts. I know this for a few reasons:
- I love writing.
- I feel inspired to write all the time. Writing is like breathing to me…if I don’t do it, I don’t feel like I’m truly living.
- I find it easy. I don’t have to think about it; it just happens.
- I’ve been told this since about the second grade.
- It runs in my family, with both my grandma and dad having published books and my brother writing poetry and songs. It’s just what we do.
In case I’m sounding pompous and conceited, this is probably a good time to tell you that I also:
- Can’t ride a bike.
- Can’t do simple fractions and percentages in my head.
- Still count on my fingers to add.
- Couldn’t name more than about seven American presidents.
- Probably couldn’t correctly label an entire map of the United States. (Though I can list every state in alphabetical order, thanks to a childhood song).
We all have our gifts.
The point is, I love ghostwriting for people. Not because I feel like I’m taking on another persona or I’m smarter than or better than them. But because I’m helping them. The people for whom I’ve written in the past are incredibly intelligent, high-functioning, eloquently spoken people. They’re engineers and CEOs and doctors. But I’ve realized that in the same way I start panicking when asked to do a mathematical equation, others panic when they have to write something (or anything). Especially about themselves. It used to baffle me because like I said before, writing comes so naturally to me. But today it clicked.
Over the last few years I’ve done things like taking someone’s personal statement for their medical school application and re-working it to help get their points across more succinctly. I’ve revamped resumes and cover letters and speaker bios. I help people tell their own stories.
I love it because it gives people peace of mind. It helps them succeed at what they’re best at, by asking for help with something they’re not as good at. I like giving people the confidence to do what they do well, and provide for them through writing what they would convey in person, but have trouble saying on their own in written form.
Up to now, this blog has primarily been about MY Life, Elevated, and me living my best life. But I want that for you, too! I may not be some lifestyle blogger extraordinaire who can help you eat right, wear all the cool clothes, style your home, maintain a budget, and travel the world, but I can help in my own way.
SO . . . I’m going to do a little experiment.
If you have a need for this kind of help, or know someone who might…shoot me a note and let’s see what we can do! I’ve never thought of myself as a freelance writer, but in the words of Mindy Kaling, “why not me?”
Whether you need help with a bio, a resume, an important speech, a cover letter, an “about me” section of your business site, or something else that’s stressing you out, I’d like to try and help alleviate your stress.
If you have a writing project that you find intimidating and could use some help with to get YOUR Life Elevated, fill out this quick form any time and I’ll get in touch with you! Let me help you tell your story.
P.S. Thank you, Meg, for the inspiration!