Stupid life. It keeps running on without me, and I’m getting a bit tired of it.
Usually I get upset by the way the craziness interferes with my social life. You know; canceling pub quiz, falling behind in my apocalyptic book club, letting that Netflix disc of West Wing languish in the corner. It’s rare that I’m upset by the way it interferes with my writing. One reason for that lack lies in the fact that I insist on writing, no matter what. Even if it’s just for a few minutes in the morning, I get my fix in.
The main reason, however, is one I rarely talk about. Because… *stage whisper* I don’t Need to write!
I cannot tell you how ashamed I am by this fact. Conferences, friends, seminars, loved ones, bloggers, all of them agree that a True Writer writes. A True Writer Needs to write, with every bone of their body. A day that passes without writing, in a True Writer’s life, is a day that is shot through with pain. Like little needles in your fingertips.
I am not a True Writer. I can go days, weeks, months without writing. I might be a little forlorn, but I wouldn’t be contemplating driving my car into a deep dark ravine. I wouldn’t even notice, except for that moment of guilt as I decide between a Female Troubles concert and a moonlight sea kayak trip, nearly instantaneously dismissing writing.
But you know what? I like writing. I like creating things, whether they’re knitted sweaters or new worlds. So I make time. I enjoy writing, and I pursue it professionally. So I’m a writer, and not a Writer. So what? Enough with the guilt, I say.
I think I’m not alone. I think there’s a whole underclass of we writers, a group that has stayed silent for too long. We’ve nodded our heads in faux agreement, as speakers pronounce their Writerly Compulsions. And we’ve felt that maybe, just maybe, there was something lacking inside ourselves. We have dear friends that are said Compulsive Writers. As quick as they are to assure us that we are, indeed, Writers, we know they’re sheltering a hidden, niggling thought that something is, indeed, lacking.
Enough. Nothing’s missing. We just have different processes. I’m going to say it, and say it loud. I do not Need to write.
… Except right now I do. There’s an exception to every rule, and right now, I want the entire world to go to hell so that I can shut myself up in my cafe with my laptop and my story. I know exactly where Mr. Jones is heading, and what’s in his path, and gosh-darn-it-all, I just want to go send him on his way! I’m having too much fun with this story.
Even so, it’s not Writing that I Need to do. It’s this particular story that’s caught me around the neck and won’t let me go. So I am still not a True Writer, and proud of it! Nyah, nyah nyah.
I seem to be ultra-cranky and spoiling for a fight. Baaaad day to be at work, today is. You should just fire me so I can go home and write.