Having it and Spending it

In my holiday post, I wished for all of you the gift of time. But time is, as they say, what you make of it.

These last few weeks, between the holidays, family commitments, several articles I enjoyed writing, and preparing for my new schedule teaching a series of classes for children, my own time has been well spent and simultaneously frittered away.

In some ways I’m grateful. The break has given me new perspective on my work. When I finally returned to my new novel for a few solid hours this afternoon, I saw it distinctly more clearly.

But as far as finishing anything (and I’m revising now, not even creating new pages), the progress has been slow to none. So I was thoroughly inspired, chided and comforted when I came across Ann Patchett’s essay, Resolved: Writing is a job.

writinghand
Just do it!

Each moment that we choose to do everything else – no matter how engaging or critical – is one more moment we’re not doing what we love. Why are we so reluctant to buckle down and write? (Why am I blogging right now instead of opening the draft and picking through another chapter?) I can come up with a hundred logical excuses, but the most honest one is that writing is hard. It takes the kind of time and concentration that requires girding loins and pulling up bootstraps and getting down to business and bucking up, sucking it up and getting things done.

Somewhere in all the procrastination, our neglected love waits. I resolve to do better, to get back on track. I will ignore all those easier, less fulfilling distractions because the story I’m dying to tell is only half told and almost no one has even read it yet.

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