Damn, I should be writing

On finding a writing routine:

I knew before I graduated from school that the hard part about setting out to be a writer would be, well, writing. It’s something I’ll never understand, why it’s so difficult to get around to doing what I love most. I was looking forward to freedom from the demands of academia to be able to write on my own time, but now the lack of a schedule that demands that I spend time writing is a challenge to overcome.

So far, if I have something that resembles a routine it looks like this: Getting up in the morning, sitting in front of the computer and thinking, “Damn, I should be writing.” Writing sometimes, or finding distractions to keep me from doing so. Then, going about my day. Cleaning while thinking, “Damn, I should be writing.” Or, sitting on the bus thinking, “Damn, I should be writing.” Or going to work thinking, “Damn, I should be writing.”

You can see where this is going. The end of the day comes and I decide I’m too tired to write, which makes me feel badly about myself after berating myself about it all day.

I know that once I fall into a routine of writing at the same time every day, I’ll be fine. I work well with routines like that. And getting up in the morning isn’t the problem; I’m used to getting up early and even if I didn’t want to my cat would make sure it happened. Blogging is helping, too. At least I’m getting my writing flow going. And if I’m blogging about writing, I figure I should at least be doing something to back it up.

I’ve also rearranged my room. The truth is I live in what is probably meant to be an office space and not a bedroom. It’s surrounded by windows on all sides and I absolutely love it, but of course I don’t have space for the desk area I’d love to have. But trying to write while sitting or laying in bed doesn’t help much with the motivation factor, so I managed to create a desk-like area for myself between my two bookshelves. I can lift the blinds and look out into the greenery of the neighbors’ backyards to my side, or stare into the neighbor’s office-equivalent of my room (somebody doesn’t know how to make the best of rentable space, geez) in front, and it at least makes me feel like I’m sitting in front of a desk and should be getting some work done (maybe thinking of it as “work” is part of the problem).

I’m going to shoot for writing in the mornings for now. Before I go out and take on the weight of the day. Hopefully most mornings, like today, I’ll be able to get some writing done. Before I was published, a stranger once told me that I shouldn’t wait for it to happen to call myself a writer. He was right. It doesn’t matter if I’m publishing what I’m writing or publishing it in the right place or having the right people read it to call myself a writer. All that matters is that I’m writing, so that’s why I’m aiming to do that, every day.

After all, putting a pen to paper and writing is so much better than sitting in front of a blank screen thinking, “Damn, I should be writing.”

Published in: on June 12, 2010 at 1:45 PM  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I really enjoyed reading this, because it also described my days of not being able to get any writing done. I too, feel a little bad about not finding the time to do so. It took me a minute to realize that if you don’t feel up to writing, don’t write. I don’t know about you, but I produce my best writing when I am feeling hella good.LOL! I crave writing, I really do, but those days when I can’t even think about thinking, there really is no point in even trying to sit in front of a computer.

    • Yeah, that’s really good to think about. I want to get myself into the habit of writing something no matter what, but you’re right, my best stuff comes when it’s not forced. Thanks for your comment!

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