My wise friend, Dacia Ball, recently gave a talk to a women’s breakfast in which she discussed, among other things, lists. Since I am a huge fan of lists, her remarks resonated with me.
I adore lists. They’re so concrete, an irrevocable record of intent: I’ll get to it, it’s on my list. Putting an item on the list ensures that it will not be forgotten or overlooked. On the list, it’s real. It has value, a place in my schedule.
If I were to conduct a scientific survey of the reasons people who say they want to be writers don’t write, I’ll bet that this would be #1. There are plenty of others—family and work would likely rank as #2 and 3–but as often as not, I imagine those would be tied into #1.
It doesn’t help that books and articles routinely bombard the poor time-deprived writer with advice that seems impossible to follow. In predictable, frustrating, and often sanctimonious fashion, nearly all of them proclaim the same thing: Writers write. If you want to be a writer, you must find or make the time to write.Continue reading →