Last year, during a lunch break for a class I was teaching, I was chatting with a writer and friend I’ve known for many years. At one point, she said, “Being a writer is hard.” I immediately agreed, and then we were interrupted before we could finish the conversation.
And I’m glad we didn’t finish because I would have gone down that familiar road with its familiar signposts…
Being a writer is hard because:
- It’s so competitive to get published
- It takes so long to hear from publishers
- So much of it is out of our hands
- Sometimes it’s not fun
- I’m tired of the rejections
And I would begin to feel that discouragement, the “why am I doing this?” question.
Complainers Usually Aren’t Doers
It’s been my experience that when someone is complaining—and I include myself here—they are usually too busy with that to do anything about what they are complaining about. Blech.
When I focus on writing being “hard,” it often keeps me from actually writing. I just sit around bitching and moaning about what “they” are doing to me while the unfinished story, the spark of an idea, the revision I was working on sits there, wondering where the heck I went.
I Want to Be a Doer of Writing
I want to just do it.
Even when it feels like I’m slogging through mud.
Even when it feels like I’m crawling on my belly in slow motion with blurry vision (have you had that dream? I haven’t in a while but boy do I feel helpless in it. My dream expert friend, Laura Deal, would have some beautiful and insightful things to say about it, apart from the obvious). 🙂
Because I love every slogging, crawling, blurry second of it even when I hate it.
I Love my Gift
When it gets down to it, I love the gift of writing. It feels like a gift from a close friend, someone who really knows me and knows what I will love, but also wanted to give me something I would keep using because that friend knew it would help me grow as a person.
Writing is a beautiful, wonderful, surprising gift.
I don’t want to complain about my gift or dwell on the torn wrapping or misshapen bow. I want to play with the box, put it on my head, turn it into a fort or spaceship or time machine.
I want to write, so I’m going to shut my complaining mouth and do it. What about you?