This is going to be as short and sweet as I can make it.
There are many important qualities to being an effective writer. So many, in fact, that to gauge them in importance against each other can be difficult at best. However, this past year has shown me one quality that shines above all others.
To me, that is determination. I think it’s a truism that hardship and adversity can breed the best stories. The best of those adversities and tragedies are the ones we experience ourselves. To live through these and to be able to express the pain and emotion of them requires determination.
On top of that, every aspect of our trade is one of overcoming the odds. Continuing to write no matter how many rejections or ‘no’s we receive. If we can’t do that, if we don’t have the determination to overcome, then we will never ever succeed at our craft.
So yes, no matter how creative or innovative or evocative of a writer we may be, we are nothing without determination. I’ve struggled through the death of my best friend and now I have just dug the grave of my dog. I don’t want to write another word, and yet I have to do so. Not just to honor their memories, but to craft something positive from the pain their deaths have given me.