Thursday, February 28, 2013

Writerly Things ~ Making Time

Additional Disclaimer:
Plenty of earthy language follows. Just sayin'.

Dear Reader, I'm ready to bet that at least once in your life you've uttered a sentiment similar to this one: "I'd do {insert super-groovy thing you'd love to do here} if only I had the time." Now, God knows I've experienced phases in which my every day responsibilities to my full-time jobby-job, my son, my parents, even my friends, have overwhelmed me. Everybody wants a piece of me and there's precious little to spare. Yeah, life can suck like that, sometimes.

If, like me, you also battle the demon of depression, then doing that super-groovy thing you love can seem impossible. In part, you feel like when you don't have to do a thing, you just bloody well won't do it, and that's that. You're drained, exhausted. You've got nothing left in you to give, even to yourself. You just can't do it. That is even le suckier, because then you find yourself letting your spare hour/evening/weekend piddle away and guilt floods you, because now  you can do that super-groovy thing, and what the fuck are you doing with this precious gift of time, but a whole lotta nothing???

Well, funk that noise.

First, whether you do or don't suffer from depression, those feelings of guilt are an exaggerated response to that evil little rat-bastard worming his way through your soul and mind and, as such, are pretty useless. Except for making you feel worse about yourself, and who the hell needs that? Pas moi. And pas toi, for that matter. Nobody needs that.

You know what you do need?

You need to do that super-groovy thing you love.

Why do you need to? Because it's medicinal; doing something you love can make you feel better, and then you may want to do more, and feel better still. Because you feeling better will make the people who love you feel better, and then you want to perpetuate that cycle 'cause, you know, you love them. And feeling better is as much a need as food, water, shelter, and Lindt chocolates. (OK, maybe that last one's not a need, but damn; work with me, people.) And, you know, you don't worry too much about finding time to eat, drink, and seek shelter. You do that shit tout de suite because you know you need to. So forget about trying to find time for that super-groovy thing you love; you're going to make time for it.

For me, that super-groovy thing is sex, but since that's not on the table (or on any other piece of furniture, alas), I write. I adore writing. I love my main characters. When I make time to hang out with them, as I've been managing to do more and more, of late, I'm all giddy and infatuated and, frankly, I'm so engrossed in their stories that I've no sense of time passing. The pleasure I derive from writing is just as hot as sex. There, I said it. No, I'm not high. Writing is as good as sex, for me, and if you're a writer, it may be true for you as well, and who the hell doesn't want to make time for sex???

Right; my train of thought just got a wee bit derailed, there. Pardonnez-moi.

Writers, whatever your situation, you can make time for that super-groovy writing you love. Look at your weekly planner, determine how much time you can devote to your writing, and write that jazz down in pen. (Everything's more serious when you write it in pen, ever notice that?) It doesn't have to be a lot of time, but it should be as close to every day as possible. (Ladies taking The Pill: you take that thing on some kinda regular schedule or else the system fails, amiright???) And when that precious time rolls around, you make sure your space for it is set up and just get down to it. Don't turn on the TV (unless you really, truly get into the writing flow when there's background conversation), don't log in to any social media. Just write. Write by hand, if online-goofery's too tempting to resist otherwise. I crank up my favorite tuneage and get cracking. (Duran Duran's got a way of priming my pump.) (So to speak.)

And don't worry about doing it perfectly. Like sex, the pleasure of writing doesn't spring from some flawless ideal; it comes from the sweaty physical contact, the stumbling engagement with the moment, and the breathtaking twists that come along the way to shake, rattle, and roll you. (I know you know what I'm talking about.) I read this nifty piece from Writers Digest today, and the bit about "nothing is ever wasted" really resonated with me. 'Cause it ain't. It's all beautiful. And it's all good. And anyway, we don't need perfection; what we need is to strive.



18 comments:

  1. Amen and high fives, my sister writer!! I've got a whole lot of re-arranging and organizing to do, but I aim to get back to hanging with my characters. And I love Duran Duran, too. :)

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    1. High fives backatcha, Babe. Ride the wave, W00000T!

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  2. Excellent post. I'm off to have sex and eat chocolate... I got the right end of the post, didn't I? ;-)

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  3. Love your "earthy" language. (;
    And I agree, writing can be as yummy as le sex, heeheh. Hope you're able to keep making time for that "super-groovy thing you love."

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    1. Merci, Madame. Gotta keep on keepin' on. :-)

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  4. I've been given the gift of being able to do my super groovy thing(s) at my leisure, since coming back to the Cape and taking on the role of stay at home wife. As you can see from the pics on Facebook, my crafting is varied and prolific. The only thing that kinda sucks is that from time to time some people make snide comments about my free time and not working. That makes me feel bad.

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    1. Well, they're wrong straight off the bat, because you are definitely working when you're crafting, and everything you produce is proof of your work. Where's there proof of having worked?

      Also, the heck with them; they envy you the time, but I bet they don't envy all the crap you had to deal with for so long before you *had* this time, right? Enjoy it, JoJo ~ the people who care, and who matter, are happy for your happiness. <3

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  5. :)

    So what you're saying here is that I should make more time to run, walk, write, AND have sex?

    Tony's gonna be so happy.... :)

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    1. Mina Lobo, promoting marital relations since 2013.

      But yeah, definitely have lots of sex with Tony. :-D

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  6. Yay for earthy language! Gawd there are so many things that I adore about this post. You are right about making time for the things which make us happy being as important as eating, breathing, etc. I've been doing pretty well with making time to fit a lot of stuff in. Yeah...well, except for the sex thing. If/when Mr. Gotta Have Him comes along, then I'll make time for that too...growwwl. ;) And yes, that will be his name. I have specific needs. I'm totally with you on Duran Duran! Okay, no sex tonight...where's that chocolate?

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    1. ROTFL, "Mr. Gotta Have Him!" If some fella strikes you that way, you'd damned well *better* make time for the nookie!!! :-D

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  7. Whoooohoooo!!! Sex for sure! Donuts for another! And a long walk in nature doesn't hurt me at all either! :)

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  8. Everybody needs to make time to enjoy life. I, like you, enjoy writing more than anything else and try to do it daily. The other thing I adore but I'm having a hard time doing daily (or even weekly for that matter) is reading. Damn days of 24 hours... When will global warming give us 26-hours days! :/

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  9. It's nice to read such an enthusiastic post. It's clear you know yourself and what's best for you. Yay!

    Sometimes, however, the idea of doing the super-cool-groovy-thing is better than actually doing it (which can be exhausting, cost too much money, or lead to unforeseen problems). And I don't know how you can say sex isn't on the table. According to Annie Lennox, "Sisters Are Doing it for Themselves" and so can you. :-)

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  10. What an inspirational piece! I definitely need to hear these words. I get so distracted by everything. I mean, when I have the kids nagging me to help them with homework and the hubby nagging me for sex, where does the time go? LOL! Seriously, I need to take your advice, unplug and set aside a slot for quiet writing time.

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  11. @Georgina - LOL, I hadn't considered the possibility of global warming increasing the length of our days!

    @Lexa - Thanks, lady! As to that other thing, perhaps I should've specified, "...with a partner." ;-)

    @Mel - I think it's totally rewarding! :-)

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