A Day in the Life of This Writer...

I resent this idea that writers don't work hard. It's often said that there is a reason why a high percentage of writers are alcoholics. Writing is not for the inert, delicate or easily distracted. It takes concentration. It requires dedication. It expects nothing less than all you can muster every moment of every day. I don't spend every day writing. Some days are spent teaching. Other days are spent working for my clients. But at least one day a week is focused solely on my creative writing. Right now, it's a script based on the life of Emily Dickinson.

Here is a look at a day in the life of this writer:


Meditation today: clear my mind of all the uncertainties. Know that I am on the right path and that I am creating something amazing. Be at peace with my life in this moment and thankful for all the love I feel today. Center my mind to focus on the task ahead.

Okay two hours in and I'm a little stumped. No stumped isn't the right word. What is the right word? How can I not know the right word? I'm a writer for God's sake. I'm supposed to have a command of words. Maybe I don't need just a word. Maybe I should start over all together. Wait. Don't trash it all. That's not helpful. Let it sit for a few minutes. Stop fighting the story. Stop fighting the characters. Let the characters be in the moment. You're pressing too hard. Take a break.

Trash can hoops! Always does the trick!

Don't censor yourself. Just write. Write. Write.

I'm on the edge of something. Maybe it's the edge of nothing. Huh? Ok great.  Now I'm at the point of making no sense at all and it's not even noon. 

Stop the negative thoughts. 

Wow. The clouds are really moving fast.  

I need a cup of tea. 

Ahh. Better. Ugh. It's only 11:10 am. I am so behind. I needed to get through at least 10 pages by lunch.

  Okay. Now I am on a roll. I somehow silently slid into a comfort zone. The words are rolling. Even my fingers feel good on the keyboard. I've always loved the sound a keyboard makes when I type. Especially the definitive sound the space bar makes. Hitting the space bar = progress. Motion. Movement. Space bar is my happy sound. I'm in my red zone. 

The world falls out of focus and the only thing I see is texture and red and words and the light changing outside the window I'm vaguely aware there is a world outside this office. The waves crash into the seawall. The rain still falls but it's as if time as been suspended and even the wind cannot reach me. I'm in a bubble a red, cozy and secure bubble filled with my thoughts and my words.

BREAK TIME. Okay. I'm losing my focus.  Time to get outside for a few minutes and catch some fresh air. I need to run some errands. Back to real life for a while.

Driving always helps me think. This song by Lady Antebellum has beautiful lyrics:

(Written by: Dave Haywood / Charles Kelley / Hillary Scott / Tom Douglas)
I run from pain
I run from prejudice
I run from pessimists
But I run too late
I run my life
Or is it running me
Run from my past
I run too fast
Or too slow it seems
When lies become the truth
That’s when I run to you

This world keeps spinning faster
Into a new disaster so I run to you
I run to you baby
And when it all starts coming undone
Baby you’re the only one I run to
I run to you

We run on fumes
Your life and mine
Like the sands of time
Slippin’ right on through
And our love’s the only truth
That’s why I run to you

This is the perfect song for my my story today. I see it now. I understand how to write Susan's pain. I've had an epiphany on this gray, rainy day. The wind is blowing but I don't care. People pass me by but I don't really see them. I'm in my mind, inside the world I have created. I can't wait to get back to my computer.

Lunch first.

Snuggle with the cats for a few minutes and snuggle with Jessie.

Think for a few minutes. Stop and be still. Re-focus.

Okay. Go.

3 hours have passed in the blink of an eye. I think I'm stuck. Where do I go from here? Don't even look at how many page's you've written.  I can't believe it's nearly 3 pm. Too quiet. My thoughts are starting to rattle around in my head and they are distracting me. I cannot allow myself to get distracted. Oh what the hell. I'm already distracted.

What's going on outside? More rain.

How are the fish?

Is there something else I can do before going back to my desk? I'm afraid to sit down. What if I'm just out of words for the day? Do writers get a word quota? Did I hit my word quota? I need to change a few things. Something doesn't feel right. UGH.

Yes. Desperate times call for desperate measures. I am re-organizing the tupperware cabinet. Why the hell do we have so much tupperware? Isn't plastic bad? How old is this stuff? Why do I always feel guilty throwing tupperware away? I think we have more lids than containers. How does that happen. It's like having socks just disappear from the dryer.


Bozo never needs socks. What would Bozo write? Perhaps Bozo has a better command of language than I do. He looks so damned happy all the time. I just want to punch him in the nose.

Enough with Bozo. Bozo really isn't any fun...DARTS!

Okay. Enough screwing around. You've just wasted 45 minutes. Get back to the computer. Get back to the story. Get back to the characters. 

Music. I need music.

Okay. Ahh. Nice. 

WRITE. It is not an option.

Facebook and email break. Hope someone sent me a funny joke. I need a good laugh right now. 

The sky outside looks amazing.

God I'm tired. Not my body. My mind. Mind fried. Keep going.

I think it's midnight. Maybe 1 am. Maybe later. It's dark out. I missed dinner. I missed sunset. I missed Dancing with the Stars.

I don't know anything anymore. I've got nothing left in the tank. I'm running on fumes, but I'm thankful. Tired but happy.  What if no one reads this?

But wait. The story isn't finished yet. 

Time to...


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