You’re never too old to start a writing career.

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SOMEHOW, SOME WAY, many people have fallen victim to the misconception of an arbitrary cutoff time for becoming a writer. This limit doesn’t exist in reality, and it’s something we do to ourselves that’s intrinsically discouraging. Sometimes when you look hard enough, it’s easy to realize that your biggest obstacle is the brick wall you’ve erected in front of yourself. It’s time to set aside your preconceived notions and explore the ways that writing can benefit you no matter when you start.

You Have More Inspiration

If there’s any one advantageous selling point on writing later in life, it’s that you have more experience to pull from. A number of wildly successful authors, such as Stephen King, can be famously quoted as saying “write what you know,” and you probably know more than someone who started much earlier in their life. You’ve been places, seen things, and gone through more trying emotional situations. These are your starting points. You have a wealth of knowledge to pull from, and that will only strengthen the intricacies of your writing when you’re sculpting believable story and character dynamics.

Simone Smith
Simone Smith

You May Have More Time to Write

The first few decades of your life were probably a little busier. College occupies a large portion of that, and after college, you have to work on getting yourself in a stable situation. If you had children, their younger years probably ran you ragged. All the stress and complicated situations in your life wouldn’t be conducive to a regular writing habit. If you’re starting after you’ve graduated, settled down, and your children can handle themselves, you’re going to find it’s much smoother sailing than it would have been had you started sooner.

It’s Good for Your Health

Many people keep journals to help relieve stress while organizing their thoughts. Whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction, it’s an effective way to sort out whatever issues may be bogging you down. Poetry and prose are also especially handy here. Some authors consider writing to be their therapy, where the pen and paper are the ritual that ultimately improves the quality of their lives. Dealing with stress, sadness, and anger through this medium is far healthier than internalizing those issues, and you may even wind up with a creative new work to show for it.

You’ll Be Taken Seriously

If your ultimate goal is to see yourself published, your age may work in your favor. There are plenty of promising writers fresh out of college, or even high school. Some of them have created impressive works, but they were less likely to have publishers willing to take a chance on them. As time progresses, you’re only becoming more mature. You’re more likely to be given an honest shot than an undergrad who is still wet behind the ears. There is no small number of late bloomers in the world of literature. Even Charles Bukowski didn’t hit it big until he was forty-nine years old.

It’s important to remember that it doesn’t matter when you start. All that matters is your dedication to the process. Your determination, ability to accept and apply criticism, your imagination, and your consistency are what will play the most important roles in your success as a writer. Today is as good a day to start as any.

Simone Smith is a writer working at Online Courses Australia. She believes that inspiring people around you and good work-life balance are a key to success. She likes to cover stories on careers and self-improvement.

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