Finding Your Writing Zen

ZZ is for Zen

What is Zen?

According to, Zen is “a total state of focus that incorporates a togetherness of body and mind. Zen is a way of being. It also is a state of mind. Zen involves dropping illusion and seeing things without distortion created by your own thoughts.”

In his book, Zen in the Art of Writing, Ray Bradbury tells us the following are necessary to achieve Zen as a writer:


It’s important to note that working for fame or money is destructive to true creativity.

“It is a lie to write in such a way as to be rewarded by money in the commercial market.”

“It is a lie to write in such a way as to be rewarded by fame offered you by some snobbish quasi-literary group in the intellectual gazettes.”

You must do the work required to become successful.

“An athlete may run ten thousand miles in order to prepare for one hundred yards.”

“Quantity gives experience. From experience alone can quality come.”

“The artist must not think of the critical rewards or money he will get for painting pictures. He must think of beauty here in this brush ready to flow if he will release it.”


We grow comfortable with a process through repetition, which results in a natural rhythm and leads to relaxation.

“Tenseness results from not knowing or giving up trying to know. Work, giving us experience, results in new confidence and eventually in relaxation.”

Don’t Think!

Don’t aim to be the next Shakespeare or acquire the wealth of J.K. Rowling. Put aside thoughts of fame or fortune and just let the words flow.

“What are we trying to uncover in this flow? The one person irreplaceable to the world, of which there is no duplicate. You.”

“If only we could remember, fame and money are gifts given to us only after we have gifted the world with our best, our lonely, our individual truths.”

With this last post for the A to Z Blogging Challenge, I hope to leave you in a state of Zen.

Now go uncover your individual truths.


To see what other A to Z participants are blogging about this month, please click here to link to their blogs.


15 thoughts on “Finding Your Writing Zen”

  1. Just terrific Melissa thank you! I’m keeping a file as I’ve said before and will refer back to it. Congratulations on finishing the A-Z and hopefully it’s now time for some zzzz’s. Thank you also for commenting on our blog with your thoughtful responses. About to check your Y post …
    Garden of Eden Blog

  2. Thanks for a great series, Melissa. Congrats on making it through to Z! Looking forward to your future posts after you take a well-deserved break. 🙂

  3. Congrats for making it to the end of A to Z Melissa! I’ve so enjoyed discovering your blog thanks to the challenge and looking forward to your posts now that life is back to normal 🙂

    I haven’t read Zen in the Art of Writing yet, it’s on the to read list -I love anything written by Bradbury and I love his approach to writing. Have you seen the speech he gave, dishing out advice to writers (the writer’s hygiene etc?) It’s wonderful, especially when he says that writing is a joy. It’s so true and so easy to lose track of when neck deep in the quagmire of crappy first drafts.

    1. Thanks Celine! I’ve really enjoyed your blog, too. You have a unique voice and your posts are always entertaining! Yes, I’ve seen the speech and it echoes the advice in the book. It’s still worth reading, though. 🙂

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