On Writing

I realized that a full three days had passed between blog posts! Whoops!

I’ve been trying to post every day or, at the minimum, every two days and I’m mad at myself for slipping. Three days! Yeesh.

I’m not ranting because I think that I have an avid fan base or anything that has now slipped into a depression due to my lack of posts or anything. Certainly not.

I’m ranting because this practice has helped instill in myself a routine and a regimen for writing. This blog has kept me accountable to a schedule for writing when nothing else has worked.

It’s so easy to let life get in the way and to forget to set aside time to write. Between school, work, and spending time with my friends and family, I often find myself making excuses for not sitting down and blocking out time to write as I should.

Every book I’ve read on writing constantly reinforces the concept that you must set aside time every day to commit to your craft to truly improve. Of course, my biggest excuse for avoiding this regimen is my go-to phrase, “Well, I do not have anything to write about! I have no ideas today!”

Anne Lamott, author of Bird by Bird, an incredible book on the day-to-day struggles a writer faces, manages to punch a hole right through my excuse. As she states in her book, anyone that has managed to live through their childhood – who makes it successfully through the seventh grade, even – has enough material to write for the rest of their life. Think about that for a second. How many of your family members are eccentric, slighty-crazy, or otherwise unusual?

I’m sure you’re picturing someone in your head right now – perhaps a senile uncle or a dad that finds flatulence at the dinner table hilarious – that you could tell stories about for hours. Everyone has at least one of those people in their family. The one that makes you blush, laugh, scream, or otherwise react to their antics or conversation.

My grandmother is that person for me. She is one of the boldest, funniest, silliest, and perhaps one of the most capricious people I’ve ever known. She’s reached the point in her life where she doesn’t care what anyone thinks of her and will happily walk of her house in a bathing suit and sneakers if that’s what she feels like wearing that day.

On top of that, she’s a wealth of history. She was born in Germany in the middle of World War II and came to the United States when she was in her 30s. Her life, alone, could make a series of books, poems, short stories, and movies. It would take me the rest of my life to try and capture just a fraction of the stories she holds inside of her, not even counting the stories I could tell about the impact she’s had on my life. Oh, the wild, galavanting adventures she and I have had!

So why do I make excuses and try to avoid my designated writing hour each day? I have no idea. Lord knows I have enough material to keep me busy for the rest of my life.

I can say that I didn’t miss my hour today. That’s a step.

And tomorrow? I think I’ll make that one, too.

Baby steps,

~ Victoria Elizabeth Ann

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2 thoughts on “On Writing

  1. I, too, but am full of excuses. I think this blog was exactly what I needed to hear. You managed to help yourself and someone else . Thanks!

    Like

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