“It’s hell writing and it’s hell not writing. The only tolerable state is having just written.” –Robert Hass
Talk about a big mood. I’ve never related to a Poet Laureate more.
A lot of writers I know talk about how the pressure to write builds up until it’s intolerable and they find themselves propelled the keyboard by sheer need.
Alternately, they say that not writing is so dull that they immediately retreat to the safety of writing, where life is interesting.
I…am not one of those writers. Writing is hard. Trying to get my ideas to go down on the page in a linear fashion and avoiding distractions are challenging. Given the choice between watching TV all day and working on my manuscript, it’ll take a lot of will-power to get me writing. But (most days) I’ll do it anyway.
Because like Mr. Hass said, having written is a kick asterisk feeling. Knowing that hey, I did that, those words on the page are all me is more satisfying than anything I can think of at this moment. It’s fulfilling, I think. Like getting a lot of housework done, but knowing that a) it’ll stay done, unlike the laundry, and b) I didn’t have to get up to do it.
This post is for other writers out there, who might have my disinclination to actually, you know, write. Seeing everyone around you get so pumped to sit down to the keyboard (or pen and paper, or feather quill and parchment, or what have you) is a pretty good way to feel like a failure as a writer. “If I’m not wildly in love with the process, maybe I’m a fake.” Nope! Your brain is just wired differently. It’s not better or worse (I promise!) just different. As long as you’re writing things, you’re still a writer.
Are you thrilled every morning you get to sit down at the computer? Are you more like me and wish the books would just appear out of the air as you think of them? Or are you some other kind of writer all together? Let me know!