If you’re just joining me, my name is Robert Acosta. I’m a dude who stepped out of his elementary school teaching job to try and become a middle-grade novelist.

So, I’m that guy.

This blog was started as a way to sort through the ungodly amount of “tips” and “advice” and “secrets” and “mysteries” floating out there for aspiring writers. Because, not sure if you’re aware, but there’s a lot of it. Twitter accounts devoted to classical writing quotes, Tumblr pages set-up around getting the most out of your notebooks, and Instagram personalites that take artistic photos of the ideal desk set-up for your writing utensils and if you don’t do it this way that’s okay you’re just going to walk around all afternoon thinking how awful you are for not having hand carved wooden pencil cases you awful waste of-

I know this, because I followed many of these pages for years.

And, recently, I’ve unfollowed a great deal of them.

Not all of them, mind, and this post is definitely not to take away anything from these people and brands. Far from it. I wouldn’t be doing this today if I wasn’t inspired by them months/years ago. I wouldn’t have worked up the courage to think I could leave the class and step into the crazy space of writing.

I still follow many. A lot of wonderful Instagram accounts push me to do better. Authors on Twitter give sound and easy-to-follow advice.

Still, I unfollowed quite a bit in the great Unfollow Purge of 2017.

#unfollowpurge2017 #hashtag.

Celebrities. Style accounts. Tumblr pages that had become reminders of what I wasn’t doing.

And that’s just it. These “author blogs” and “writer’s circles” should be central hubs for your creativity to blossom. Every time you open your phone, you should see one of these photos and think, “Man! That’s great! I need to create a Quote Page in my Bullet Journal and I’m going to do that right now!”

*closes phone

*runs over to desk

*picks up feathery quill

*begins writing masterpiece

But most of the time it doesn’t go like that. Instead, you look at a celebrity’s Instagram page, someone you may have admired for years, and think, “I wish I had that…”

And that’s it!

That’s the end of that thought line. You don’t think how you can achieve that trip to Spain, or ask yourself what that person did to attain that book deal. You just think negative and bad, no-good thoughts.

And it’s not their fault! No, not in the slightest. They’re doing what they love, just like you should be doing what you love.

But if what they do makes it so you can’t do what you do, then, they’re not helping you.

They’re hurting you.

Don’t feel bad about unfollowing a person. It’s fine, trust me. Most likely, they have a floppity-jillion followers and won’t even notice. Even if it’s not a floppity, then, just remind yourself that self-care is more important than a follower number.