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Thursday, November 18, 2010

The Top Three Reasons to be Grateful for a Writer's Life

Thanksgiving is coming up and we’re all getting busy for the holiday season. And unless you’re participating in nanowrimo this year your writing may have taken a back seat for the holidays.

It’s so easy to think about all the reasons of why it’s so hard to write. There are deadlines to meet, finding and promoting your brand, word count goals, and the list can go on and on. Add on top of that the many family obligations, real life stuff, work, and children. Life gets crazy around November. So my question to the person who made Nanowrimo in November is: What were you on?

I cannot fathom doing Nano and gearing up for Christmas. On top of all of that I have not one but two children with birthday’s this month so my time is stretched so thin I’m surprised it hasn’t broken yet. And quite often my writing gets set aside more than I like, although I do struggle every day to get my word count down. The words always seem to flow better in every month for me except November. Regardless, the words will pick right back up in January and hold steady right up until next... you know it... November.

So in honor of a writer’s hectic life, I thought I would write down my list of the top three reasons to be grateful for being a writer.

3. Thank goodness for early mornings when I wake at the crack of dawn, pour salt in my coffee, get the kids to work and the husband to school, and sit down to write at seven am. Turning on my pc, knocking over my coffee, cursing and scrambling to clean it up before it gets to my laptop, and then realizing I have to wait on the updates to finish loading before I even get to my desktop. *sigh* Why did I get up so early to write again?

And then I glance outside to see the barest hint of color line the horizon as the sun starts its ascent in the sky. I set down my now-empty coffee cup to stare at the picturesque scene and think about the many ways I can describe the peace that settles over my soul in that one single moment.

2. Thank goodness for late nights when the kids have all gone to bed and silence descends in the house as I realize I have a moment to write finally! I dash to my desk, turn on the laptop – wait once again on the updates to install – sit down in my chair, realize I didn’t pay the electric bill, the dryer dings and lets me know I now have laundry to fold, and the dog whines to go out. *sigh* Why am I staying up so late when all I want to do is go to sleep?

And I close my eyes and listen to the silence in the night and my muse peeks out behind a corner with the merest hint of a scene. I sit up to write down that first word on the page and the flood gates open.

And the number one reason to be grateful for a writer’s life is...drum roll please...

1. Thank goodness for weekends when after football games, grocery store, cleaning the house, watching a movie with the kids, and dinner with the family as I take just a moment or two to write a few words. I rush to my desk, manage to get through the blasted updates – just how many updates does Microsoft really have and just how many of them are helping – and I have the rest of the weekend to write in the current wip only to find myself staring at a blank page. Where did the words go? I swear I just had them right here! I get up, pace, check the clothes in the dryer, come back stare at the screen, curse, the damn clothes still aren’t dry and I still have no words...

And just as the weekend is nearing its end at twelve midnight, after I’ve wasted away the entire weekend looking for those missing words, I get in the shower and the scene unfolds like a movie in my head. You’ve got to be kidding me?

I rush to my laptop – no updates! Hurray! – open the wip and realize that this will end up being another late night and Monday morning is just mere hours away.

So there ya have it. The top three reasons why we should be grateful for being a writer. Isn’t the writer’s life grand?

Share with me your funny, disastrous reasons why you’re grateful for being a writer or just share with me your hilarious writer’s moments. I’d love to see just how much our lives are alike.


  1. Oh, Melissa. I love your sense of humor. My number one reason I'm grateful for being a writer? I used to lie awake in bed at night for hours, thinking up all the details of a story because I couldn't do anything else until I fell asleep. Now I lie awake in bed at night for hours, thinking up plot possibilities and ways to torture my hero and heroine the next day. Same thing is happening--I'm lying in bed awake at night for hours--but at least now there is some purpose served.

  2. LOL Catherine, oh I'm so glad I'm not the only one that does that too. Going to bed doesn't necessarily mean going to sleep for me lol. Wish I'd have thought about that one lol. Thanks for stopping by and sharing!

  3. Goodness, I can't believe your muse shows up at all! I've seen hide nor hair of mine since the day I got pregnant! Well, I shouldn't say that - I do see her from time to time, for very fleeting moments, but mostly I'm too darn tired these days to even open the door for her. I already feel like a walking zombie most days - I can't imagine what I'd do if I got up early or went to bed late to accommodate a persistent muse. I can't wait until she's old enough to go to school. LOL!

  4. Melissa,
    What a hilarious post! I know exactly what you mean about the updates. Can we really need that many and why do I not see an improvement in performance after I've done them. The top two reason I love being a writer are I get an unbelievable sense of self-worth just by creating a story, and I have made connections with other people in my life, like you, that I know I would have never made if I was not a writer.

  5. Ugh Jerrica I am exhausted from it, so I'm not sure I recommend it. It'll get easier as Bella grows older though. She'll learn to play with her toys for a an hour and you can sneak in some writing time.

    Julie! I love those reasons! I have to admit I'm not too much of a people person but I have definitely found some wonderful friends among the writing community. And hoo rah! on the self worth, you go girl!

  6. Great post. I have a theory about the timing of NaNoWriMo. Its set for November to instill a sense of panic. If it was set in December no one would have time. But in November, it's like the last blast of the year to achieve something bit. LOL. Worked for me that year. :o)