From Kate’s Writing Crate…
I read a lot so I cannot remember where I read about someone questioning whether there were better ways to spend your days than writing. I do remember thinking I should answer that question.
For many, the answer is yes. Otherwise there would be many more books and blogs. On Kristen Lamb’s blog, WarriorWriters, she recently wrote that only 5% of writers finish their books.
For me, the answer is no. I’m a writer. I’ve always been a writer. I’m sad/cranky/bored when I don’t write.
Writing makes me think, makes me observant, makes me connect life’s dots.
As I go through my days, I take note of moments I want to write about later. As I pay more attention to my surroundings, my subconscious picks up on things I may miss at the time.
When I have blank pages to fill, I rack my brain for these moments. My thoughts and observations help me make sense of life, especially my life.
That’s living at a deeper level than when I worked 9-5 at jobs I hated. I wasted time after work doing mindless things and being angry because I was unhappy—not better ways to spend my days.
Is it difficult to fit writing into your days? Yes, there are often more fun things to do or more important things or more necessary things—laundry and dishes come to mind. Most ways to spend your days make your life a blur. You remember milestones, special events, tragic moments, but not a Thursday in September eight years ago. But if you write, you have a journal, a notebook entry on that day.
When I look back at my early notebooks and articles, part of me cringes. I hadn’t found my voice. I wasn’t organized. I used awkward phrases. I made mistakes—lots and lots of mistakes. But I can also see over many years of filling notebooks that I did find my voice. I organized my thoughts. My writing became less awkward and I made fewer mistakes.
Writing makes you a writer. If I’d been writing more through the years, I’d be an even better writer.
I had plans. I was excited about writing several different genres, but I gave in to unhappiness, anger, and exhaustion and gave up. My notebooks contained more whining than writing for a while.
For the last ten years, between writing articles and now blogging, I’m writing more. The more I write, the more I want to write. The more I write, the faster I write which creates time for even more writing. Want proof? I used to spend four or five hours on each of my posts when I was a new and nervous blogger. Now I write three posts in that same amount of time.
Recently, I’ve branched out into two other genres which I will write about in future posts because writing is a better way for me to spend my days.