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It hit today.
That oh-my-word-why-did-I-agree-to-write-another-book-I-hate-writing-I-have-nothing-to-say phase.
I avoided writing all day.
I took Max for a walk. Twice.
I washed, dried and folded Every. Single. Scrap. Of. Laundry.
I cleaned my refrigerator for heaven’s sake.
By 3:00 pm I shamed myself into sitting down at my computer.
I had a stern talk with myself. Out loud.
(My husband, who works from home upstairs, thinks I’m on the phone when I do this. It’s all good.)
I sat down. I opened my laptop.
I watched my cursor blink for 15 minutes.
I hate you cursor.
I twirled my hair.
I thought about doing a search for “how to get out of a writing contract” on Google.
I pictured every single one of my former students who I had deemed “reluctant writers.”
Oh my word.
They weren’t “reluctant” writers.
They were writers.
And, writing is hard.
It’s especially hard when you worry that what you write won’t be good enough.
Or that someone will chew it up and spit it out.
Or that you’ll have to (Lord, help me) rewrite it.
And then I remembered the story I heard recently about Beverly Clearly. For her 100th birthday, NPR interviewed the author’s daughter, Marianne Cleary. Marianne recalled her mother’s writing habit: “She’s very disciplined. When she would write every morning, she would sit down after breakfast, my brother and I would go to school, and she would write, till noon or so. She never waited for inspiration, she just got to it.”
That’s how it gets done. There's no magic. It's just discipline and struggle.
I did finally write a bit - just a bit.
But it wasn’t bad. I may even write a bit more tomorrow.
Bit by bit.