Reason No 22: Call yourself a writer? Ha!

Ever noticed that when you tell someone about that great thing you’re going to do, half the time you don’t do it?

Why? Because you’ve already got the glory (‘Wow! Aren’t you kind/brilliant/creative! So you’re doing xyz!’) – so why bother? Apart from the wow factor (which comes of telling other people about your Achievement To Be) you’ve also got the ‘I dreamt it therefore I did it’ factor (which comes of telling yourself).

You thought of it (the novel, the sustainable vege garden, the apple tree seedling), you dressed it up and rounded it out in your head (the accolades, the piles of glowing apples, the smug smile ‘yes we grow all our own food here’) – so is actually DOING really necessary?  (Especially when someone gives you all the curiously dappled apples you need- see above)

Anyway, I cleaned out my studio this week. It looks brilliant!  My keyboard in the corner, my impressively ancient-looking copy of the Compleat Works of Shakespeare in the cabinet, The Man’s unicorns, dragons and antique hat boxes embelllishing his side of the room (for business purposes only – he’s not planning to write a novel, as far as I know).

So now I have to use it.  But I’m not going to start a new novel – instead I’m going to finish all the novels I already started.  I’m going to make a collection ‘Rose’s Anthology of Romance and Vitriol’ (or something like that) which I can sit on the shelf next to the Compleat Works (see above) and gaze at in rapt satisfaction.  My Work.  Finished.  Done.

I am going to do this, just watch me.  I’ve already finished the first step, which is to get a proof of one of my literary works and stick it next to the toilet.  No, not to wipe my bum with.  So I can make corrections while listening to Nature’s call – obviously.

Meanwhile, I wrote a Poem about that most tragic of situations – the demise of our local pub (and the Friday Blues Night).  True story.  Sung to the tune of The Pub with No Beer….

When I was out driving at about six o’clock,

I came on a small town and thought I might stop.

I was thinking a drink, maybe something to eat,

But the pub had turned into a yoga retreat.

So I bought me some nuts at the cute corner shop,

And asked how they liked doing the downward dog.

The look on their faces was answer complete –

What we want is a pub not a yoga retreat!

A town needs a pub like a man needs a shed

It’s no good hoping he’ll take to knitting instead.

So bring back our beer and blues music so sweet,

And fuck off to the city with your yoga retreat!

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6 thoughts on “Reason No 22: Call yourself a writer? Ha!

  1. When I first started writing a dozen years or so ago, a friend gave me very valuable advice that I didn’t listen to. She told me not to talk to people about my writing because doing so does something to the ol’ motivation. She was write. For a while I didn’t talk to people about my writing. Then I got a blog and I wrote more and I shared more and people I knew found out I wrote. So I talk about my writing. Only thing is that … I don’t write fiction anymore. And I think there’s some truth to what my friend said and to what you are saying here.

    It’s time to shut up and write.

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    • Yeah it is funny, but I think you’re right (write:). It’s like, do it or talk about it, but not both. I do miss being with people who write, though. I used to have an ex who was quite creative, and although he was awful in other ways, it was stimulating to be with someone who could shoot back poems as quick as I could write them. So, you don’t write fiction – do you write non fiction? I do, a bit – it seems easier than creating something out of nothing. Going downhill, evidently!

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      • My non-fiction is what shows up on my blogs and in my work and other ways. Fiction is what excites me and motivates me, however, and I’m simply not doing much of it these days. It would be nice to find a small group of other writers to talk with about writing and leave the rest behind.

        It’s odd. Just about when I get excited about a story and I share it with somebody is right about when I lose interest in righting it. I need to learn to hold on to that excitement until I’ve crossed the finish line.

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  2. Yes, that’s it, you’ve pinpointed it! So we both need to NOT talk about our fiction (and you need to write some). I would like some other writers to share stuff with – have thought about joining a writer’s group but they seem to mostly gather around these workshops on how to write and I kinda know how to write, or how I want to write anyway, so…

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  3. I am SOOOO looking forward to perusing your Anthology next time i use your rural facilities. Sounds like a very achievable achievement.

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