This blog was featured on 09/11/2019
Are You Too Old to Write a Book?
Contributor
Written by
Bella Mahaya Carter
September 2019
Contributor
Written by
Bella Mahaya Carter
September 2019

Recently a client in her mid-sixties, who was feeling daunted by the work involved with writing, publishing, and promoting a book, asked, “Am I too old to write a book?”

“Absolutely not,” I told her. 

I have another client, Irene Sardanis, who published her first book, Out of The Bronx, a memoir, this past spring, at the age of eighty-five. She’s having the time of her life celebrating and promoting it.

Has it been challenging? Yes. Has it been hard and scary at times? Yes. Did she have moments when she didn’t think she could do it? Absolutely!

But writing and publishing this book has been a highlight of her life. She has grown on multiple levels. The experience has enriched her and has provided wonderful opportunities she hadn’t previously imagined. 

It’s not surprising that many women hit their stride and make some of their most meaningful contributions later in life. Many have been taking care of the needs of their families while also working outside the house, which leaves little time for reflection, or the time, space, and quiet that writing requires.

Beginner at Any Age

The trick when beginning any new project is to take it one step at a time. Allow yourself to be a beginner. This means opening up to not knowing. It probably means asking for help. It will require you to show up in whatever ways make sense in any given moment.

This will likely feel scary, but that’s a good sign. Fear tells you you’re living fully, putting yourself out there and growing! It’s exciting to expand—and who says we have to stop learning at a particular age? There is no cut-off number for creative productivity unless we ourselves create one. Older women have wisdom and valuable experiences to share. 

Writing, publishing, and promoting a book is multi-faceted. Savvy authors know themselves, their values, and their audience. They study the business of writing as well as the art and craft. Some even discover that they enjoy it all! Worlds expand and careers may take off at any age.

It’s not about what we cannot do; it’s about what we can do.

And more often than not we’re capable of much more than we think—because we are unlimited beings. Be gentle with yourself as you reach beyond your comfort zone. You’ll be amazed at how you’ll be guided—and holding your finished book in your hand will bring you unimaginable satisfaction, gratitude, and joy! And that will be just the beginning . . .

For more inspiration check out this article on women who published their first book after the age of seventy!

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Comments
  • Wonderfully and beautifully written article that is both encouraging and supportive. Thank you for sharing.