I’ve only been writing this blog for about five weeks now, give or take a few days. And in that time, I’ve noticed something a little disconcerting. People — by that, I mean “writers” — are spending too much time writing blog posts or reading other blogs — so much time that it’s distracting them from actually writing fiction. Why just yesterday morning, one blogger I follow announced that he was no longer going to maintain his blog. He was cutting back, he said, because the blog was taking up too much of his time. He wrote, “I haven’t even looked at my novel in six months and she’s getting pissed with the lack of attention.” (I won’t mention any names.)
If you aren’t writing, then why are you reading this?
A similar concern was expressed by a writer who recently posted a question on a Facebook forum that I follow. She asked the group, “How do you deal with writing for others and writing for yourself? Between writing for others and maintaining my blogs, I don’t have the energy or motivation to work on my book.”
People! — by that, I mean Writers! — please, don’t get bogged down in/with blogging. If you aren’t writing, then why are you reading this? If you aren’t making your stories or your novel a priority, then immediately and without any hesitation, click the little x in the top right corner and turn your attention to your craft. If you are spending more time attending to your blog than your work, take a moment. Reassess in a major, major way.
Look at it this way: A few weeks ago, accomplished and prolific science fiction writer Ray Bradbury died. Yesterday, accomplished filmmaker, director, producer, screenwriter, novelist, playwright, journalist, author, and blogger Nora Ephron died. Neither one of these masters left their novels for “tomorrow.” If you are going to make your mark, the time to do it is now.
As E.L. Doctorow said:
Planning to write is not writing. Outlining, researching, talking to people about what you’re doing, none of that is writing. Writing is writing.
p.s. that goes for me, too.
Photo: juniorbonnerphotography / Flickr Creative Commons