Monday, May 05, 2008


One of my favorite essays about "writing" was penned by the Cleveland Plain Dealer columnist, Regina Brett. If you're "thinking" about writing, but you aren't sure how to start, I'd advise you to read her essay "Words are free. Write. No excuses" and really take it to heart. More than likely, you will see one or more of the excuses you've used or continue to use as a convenient cop-out. Deep down, you probably already know this--but you're really not fooling or hurting anyone, besides yourself (smile).

Want a short course on how not to write? The following are some of my favorite bits and pieces from Brett's essay . . .

**Watch hours of mindless TV.

**Visit a chat room of writers.

**Answer the phone everytime it rings.

**Fret over whether it's who or whom, lie or lay, its or it's . . .

**Agonize over whether to use colons or semi-colons.

**Recall every bad writing grade you ever got.

**Replay scenes in your head of every teacher who ever criticized your work.

**Get your doctorate in creative writing first.

**Find the right writers group.

**Wait until you get over your fear of rejection or fear of success.

**Complain that it's too hot, too cold, too muggy or too nice outside to write.

**Analyze every idea before you write the first sentence.

**Use only big words to impress people.

**Sign up for another writer's conference instead of actually writing.

**Look for affirmation from everyone around you.

**Waste time envying other writers who have it so easy.

**Edit as you go. Check the rules of grammer and punctuation before you finish every paragraph.

**Talk about your ideas so much that even you lose interest.

**Wait until you have children.

**Wait until your children stop teething, finish soccer season, go off to college.

**Wait until you go on vacation.

**Wait until you retire.

**Wait until you find your muse.

**Wait until you feel inspired . . .

You get the point? Like I said, read the entire piece; it's more than worth your while. Besides, aren't you in need of yet another excuse not to write anyway? (LOL) If any of these sound familiar, feel free to comment.


shelia said...

Visit every blog on your blogroll...:)

Good essay!

pjazzypar said...

I feel you. I am suppose to be working on my dissertation proposal, but I cannot seem to get inspired. I always say I'll start tomorrow, but that excuse has played all the way out.

Lori said...

Nice addition! I know I'm guilty.

Stop procrastinating and get that proposal in, girl! Dr. Pjazzy has a nice ring to it, don't ya think? (smile).

Keith said...

Write the story in your head first to work out the kinks... I hate writing. But it really is the best kind of pain!

(BTW - My wife loved the book, the characters, and everything else. She said to me "this is m kind of book." But I knew that that's why I let her read it first. I'll be getting into it soon myself.)

Lori said...

Yes, writing can be painful, but I don't know how NOT to do it (smile).

Glad to hear your wife enjoyed AFTER THE DANCE. Tell her thanks for the thumbs up. It will be interesting to hear your take, especially when it comes to the male characters.