To some, writers may seem like perpetual beings of wander; chain smoking, whiskey guzzling, caffeine addicts waiting for inspiration to pass through them as if they were some sort of filter between regular life and a higher state of consciousness. That writers spend most of their time in between this flux state of balancing the lows of writer’s block and the bliss-level highs of feverish inspiration. That is simply untrue.
What is true is how much writers work. Writers dedicate time every single day to practice their craft. They write on the weekends, on holidays, on their own birthdays, on spouse’s birthdays (probably not much but still). Writers write when they are sick, when their child is sick (and the writer just got done cleaning up an outrageous amount of throw-up for such a small person), they write when they feel lazy, when the game is on, they write when the great outdoors is calling them on a beautiful day and when their bed is calling them on a rainy day. Writers write, plain and simple.
A writer does not wait until inspiration calls them to the desk, they live at their desk. They don’t wait until they are pulled out of bed in the middle of the night, as if the clouds opened up and the hand of God selected them to write something great. Even though, those feelings are common and are what probably drew the writer to writing in the first place, it is not something to be relied upon nor capable of building a career on. Author, Neil Gaiman said it best, “If you only write when you’re inspired, you may be a fairly decent poet, but you will never be a novelist because you’re going to have to make your word count today and those words aren’t going to wait for you whether you’re inspired or not…”
Now, not everyone is out to be a novelist, and some strive to be fairly decent poets, but the point that Mr. Gaiman is making is that the words aren't going to wait for you. It is up to you to find them, to write and rewrite and rewrite until you do; And the more you work, the better your chances of finding them.
Go find them.
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