Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Some Dedication Required

There are always things that come up in regular life that will call in to question our dedication to writing.

Jobs. How do you balance a good day job with writing? How do you make decisions about that job or about your writing schedule that satisfy both the writing dream and the need to like, eat food? It really would be easier to just forget about writing novels all together and get a "real job."

A social life. Does any writer really have one? Thank God for understanding and equally quirky friends, both online and IRL.

Then there's those potentially discouraging moments within the writing life itself. Negative reviews, rejections, finally finishing a project only to come back to exactly where you were at the beginning...a blank page.

I feel like I've gone through a minefield of these types of situations lately. Now that the end of the crazy is in sight, I'm starting to feel like it was a good thing. Yes it would have been much easier to pick a different route and forget about my writerly dreams entirely. Much easier. But at no point in the minefield have I ever even considered it. I have never questioned if writing and my goals with that are actually worth it. To me that says that I am in the right field, even if it is spattered with mines. I've been tested, I've been shown the easier path, and I really don't want it. In a way I feel reinvigorated, like this summer was here to tell me "Ok, if you're stupid enough to keep going and keep wanting to keep going with all this stuff blowing up in your face than you might as well...keep going."

Even if the path was nice and soft and trimmed, it is still a chugging long path. No writer starts off a genius. I truly believe that. Sure some may have more natural talent but we all still have a long road of practice and failing and editing and practice and failing and more editing ahead of us until we even reach the level of Good. That in and of itself is enough to deter a lot of people.

So yeah, maybe to stick this whole writing thing out--not just stick it out but drink it in, dream it, need it--does take an element of insanity.

Sarah Allen


  1. Fortunately, I have a dull yet somewhat satisfying day job that allows me the freedom to work on my writing (mostly for the blog, some editing for other projects) during the slow periods.

    As for the social, being married with children basically kills any dreams of a social life.

  2. My ears still always prick up when someone mentions a possible shortcut. None have turned out to be real so far, though.

    Moody Writing

  3. OMG! Lately, I've feeling the same thing. Your words are perfect.

    Hugs and chocolate,


  4. Everyone in a creative field deals with this on a constant basis. To write, or not to write? Sure, it may be easier to forget about it and get some unfulfilling job and have free time once you're done for the day - but when you love what you do, it's worth all of the stress and sacrifice.


  5. I don't have as many challenges to balance as others do. I'm relatively unpopular (don't have many friends) and have no wife or kids. So yeah, writing is easy to find the time for.

  6. Sanity is so boring! The writing life is the ONLY life - have fun and embrace it!

    PS I might be a little bit biased :-)

  7. Rah for writerly insanity. Keep plugging away!! :)


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