Dare to be different

Is it only the English who embrace eccentricity?

Why do many of us find it easier to fit in, to be the same as everyone else?

I’d much rather be different. To stand out from the crowd.

Look at this bluebell, or should I say ‘pink bell’.

Walking in the woods on Saturday I noticed him immediately, standing proudly there inside a sea of blue. Yet, he was definitely stronger and sturdier than his blue brothers. Yes, he stood out from the crowd. But he boldly basked in his difference.

Often, new writers tell me that they are writing a book but that they refuse to be influenced by other similar books and so they do not read them. They prefer to stay pure, untainted.

I think that is foolish. I believe that we writers need to first compare ourselves to the others out there ‘like us’ and then, armed with that knowledge, we can move forward  to write our books ‘our way’.

Undoubtedly, this bluebell was influenced by his blue peers. He grows and flourishes alongside them. He wants to be compared to his brothers. But it is only by standing next to them that he can truly show his uniqueness.



  • Tracey Rissik

    Hi Jo,

    I like your analogy :)

    {But not quite sure what to make of this one ;-) My cat squashed my pink bell in the garden yesterday while chasing a piece of string… was it standing out too much??!!?}

    It’s good to go your own way – and to have the inner strangth & confidence that what you’re doing is right for you… which is what counts.

    Good luck
    Tracey :)

  • Niamh

    Jo, I like this blog. It encourages me further in my quest to be being me. Your blog challenge is going fantastic by the way!!! xxN

  • Kristy

    “Always know your competition”, is probably the best advice I received as a writer.

    A beautiful blog from someone that has a beautiful soul.

  • Lisa

    Jo, I relate to the bit about being different. I prefer to be eccentric, but it’s just who I am, I don’t try to be that way :) I also related to what you said about writers. I myself read others who are similar to me since it helps me to find my voice. I see how my voice is different via the mirror of others’ writings. It helps me to learn more about who I am and who I am not. I used to think that I shouldn’t write my book since it has been written in a different form by a different voice/author. But, my message will be unique; no one else can write the book but me. It will attract a different audience than the other similar books on the same subject. So, I resonate with what you write here.

  • Michelle Church

    That was well said, I REALLY enjoyed that. I like to be different too…that had me hooked from then on…Thanks great post! I love authenticity..So true!

  • Jo Parfitt

    You know, guys, since I wrote this post I kept being reminded that being different (this post) and finding a safe environment (the day before’s) are exactly what is needed to help us find our voice and then be brave enough to stick with it, knowing it is exactly that – our unique voice – that will make our book the best it can be.

    Thanks for adding your inspiration.