Pages & Paws

Writing, Reading, and Rural Life With a Border Collie

Are You Writing “On the Way Down”?

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“We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”

—Kurt Vonnegut

Wasn’t school letting out just last week, kids punching the air with “Yessss!” in anticipation of summer vacation?   Where did summer go?

Fall has long been my favorite season.  But it comes at a price – a sigh and a sense of loss – always flavored with amazement, as in, “Where, oh where, did summer go?”

 When You Aren’t Lookin’

Have you noticed?  It’s easy to say the same about writing, isn’t it?  To sigh and say, I was going to finish chapter twenty-two today, but…  I haven’t actually finished the proposal… I planned to, but… thought about… talked about… considered… Well, maybe…

Yet the novel, article, story, essay, or outline sit on your desk or in your hard drive unfinished, poised to creep out the back door when you aren’t lookin’.

Flush and Unfinished

Some writers I know are flush with ideas and unfinished manuscripts.  They talk about writing in sentences punctuated with “one of these days” and “when I get around to it” or “when it slows down some.”

Truth?  If you’re waiting to write until you “have time” or life “slows down some,” chances are you never will.

You Know Why

So, why do some writers have so many unfinished writing projects scattered about, collecting one or more layers of dust?  You know why.

If they work on their writing project, they might finish it.  And if they finish it they may have to do something with it.  And that involves risk.  It’s not easy seeing the work you’ve labored over so long and lovingly returned with a “thanks but no thanks” form letter or ignored altogether.

It Takes Guts

Writing takes not only perseverance and discipline, it takes guts.  Risk is part of the territory.  Staying off the cliff is safe, but you’ll never develop your wings on the way down.

Summer is melting like a popsicle in September.  Don’t let your writing get away from you like summer did.  Stop talking about writing and write.  Not tomorrow.   Not some day.  Now.  You can do it.

What writing project will you finish today? Share in the comments section.

Have you signed up for Wreal 8, my free monthly newsletter on writing and reading?  You can do that here.  Grab a copy of my FREE micro Ebook, Skipping the Tiramisu: Becoming the Writer You Were Born to Be, when you subscribe!


Up next: Getting It Write By Doing It Wrong.

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