Excuses abound. Every writer has them. They’re the “but” that finds its way into our day and brings a writing project to a halt…or stops it from ever taking its first step.
“I want to write a novel, BUT ________________________________.”
“I would finish this project, BUT _________________________________.”
“I know I should learn the craft better, BUT ___________________________.”
“I know what my critique partner said, BUT __________________________.”
“Maybe I should be more disciplined, BUT _____________________________.”
“It would be nice to attend a conference or writers group, BUT ____________________.”
“I’d enter my writing in a contest, or ask someone to read it, BUT __________________.”
All together now, let’s get jiggy with it and scream, “I HATE THESE BUTS AND I CAN NOT LIE….” (that concludes the rap reference part of this post)
There are many other examples of when a “but” intrudes on our writing life. And there countless ways to fill in the blanks. I’m willing to bet that you are like me (no insult intended) and could fill in the blanks above with more than one reason/excuse/cop-out. Before you slap a knot on my head, let me hasten to add that undoubtedly there are legitimate reasons that we are unable to start or continue a project, or enter a contest, or go to conference or whatever the case may be. However, honesty and maturity will force us to face the fact that often–quite often–we are simply making excuses.
I urge you to sit down and have an honest chat with yourself and your muse and say, “It’s time to do some “BUT” kicking!
Are YOU up to the challenge?