Bukowski on “you want to be a writer?”


so you want to be a writer?

 

if it doesn't come bursting out of you 
in spite of everything, 
don't do it. 
unless it comes unasked out of your 
heart and your mind and your mouth 
and your gut, 
don't do it. 
if you have to sit for hours 
staring at your computer screen 
or hunched over your 
typewriter 
searching for words, 
don't do it. 
if you're doing it for money or 
fame, 
don't do it. 
if you're doing it because you want 
women in your bed, 
don't do it. 
if you have to sit there and
rewrite it again and again, 
don't do it. 
if it's hard work just thinking about doing it,
don't do it. 
if you're trying to write like somebody 
else, 
forget about it.

if you have to wait for it to roar out of 
you, 
then wait patiently. 
if it never does roar out of you, 
do something else. 
if you first have to read it to your wife 
or your girlfriend or your boyfriend 
or your parents or to anybody at all, 
you're not ready.

don't be like so many writers, 
don't be like so many thousands of 
people who call themselves writers, 
don't be dull and boring and 
pretentious, don't be consumed with self- 
love. 
the libraries of the world have 
yawned themselves to 
sleep 
over your kind. 
don't add to that. 
don't do it. 
unless it comes out of
your soul like a rocket, 
unless being still would 
drive you to madness or 
suicide or murder, 
don't do it.
unless the sun inside you is 
burning your gut, 
don't do it.

when it is truly time, 
and if you have been chosen, 
it will do it by 
itself and it will keep on doing it 
until you die or it dies in 
you.

there is no other way.

and there never was.

Charles Bukowski

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About Gautam

Gautam is a HR professional interested in how emerging technologies are impacting work, careers and organizations.

Posted on January 13, 2013, in blogging. Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on Bukowski on “you want to be a writer?”.

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