Habit Forming

I somehow imagined that, once I finally managed to finish a novel, I would get better at sitting my ass down to write on a regular basis. Surely the effort and discipline that went into writing 80,000 words would translate into a permanent habit, right?


Not so much. It’s been over a year since I finished my second draft of that first novel (down to 60,000 words. Revision matters!), and if anything I probably spend less time writing for myself now than before.

It’s not that I don’t have free time.

Yeah, you’re paying how much to store the kid at daycare?

My professional obligations ebb and flow the way they always have. I still get home at a reasonable hour most days.

But there are still a ton of things to do that aren’t writing. It was laughable to think I would suddenly find it easier to write books than to read them, or be more motivated to spend my evenings with Google Docs instead of the X-Box.

You’re seriously going with that rhyme?

Somehow, I manage to spend an awful lot of time feeling like I don’t have an awful lot of time. So obviously the solution is to stop feeling sorry for myself and get to work. That’s a lot easier to type than do.

I’ve looked up all kinds of motivational techniques for us lazy writers. Really, they all pretty much boil down to “Type, bitch!” Like just about every endeavor, there’s no secret to success. People who aren’t successful just assume there is.

At least this week has gone well. I’ve managed to put in some time every day so far, at least if you count this blog post as creative.

I wouldn’t.


One thought on “Habit Forming

  1. I kind of feel like you’re talking about me in this post. I know you’re not, but I can’t help but to see an imaginary finger pointing at me in a judgmental fashion. This summer, especially, I wanted to dedicate a lot of my energy to writing a few pieces that could be submittable but what I ended up with was a massive to do list, a lot of fabulous ideas for essays and short stories, a literary agent who is patient – but maybe resentful at my turnaround times, and the hope that the fall will bring some focus. “Write Bitch” good advice, though, it is certainly easier said than done. Or maybe not?

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