It’s so simple, yet one of the hardest things to do:
If you wish to be a writer, write. -Epictetus
Why is it so hard? Natalie Goldberg sums it up best in her book, Writing Down the Bones:
Your kids are climbing into the cereal box. You have $1.25 left in your checking account. Your husband can’t find his shoes, your car won’t start, you know you have lived a life of unfulfilled dreams. There is a threat of nuclear holocaust, there is apartheid in South Africa, it is twenty degrees below zero outside, your nose itches, and you don’t have even three plates that match to serve dinner on. Your feet are swollen, you need to make a dentist appointment, the dog needs to be let out, you have to defrost the chicken and make a phone call to your cousin in Boston…
In short, there are so many other things that require our immediate attention than making up stories so people can read them during their free time.
But who says imagination and fun aren’t important? Did you know that being imaginative leads to better productivity overall?
Yet to us, the act of sitting down to write might not seem important enough to invest time and effort in as all the other things that Goldberg mentions.
Maybe that’s why I have such a hard time allowing myself to just sit and let out my ideas as they come to me. Because no one is asking for them, they aren’t going to get me anything in the short term, and they don’t come out whole or complete. So why bother?
Well, I have a lot to say that I wouldn’t get a chance to say if it wasn’t for my writing. That’s what ultimately gets me going. Plus, there’s nothing like letting your imagination run away with you sometimes. It gives your mind the fuel it needs to keep up with the everyday stuff you have to do over and over again.
Now I’m turning the floor over to you. How do you make time to write? What do you do to get the creative juices flowing? Feel free to reply in the comments section below!