What is Writing?

July 12, 2015 in General Topics

In an interest in informing the general public, and aspiring authors in general, a brief primer:

Writing is not an affair generally conducted from the vantage point of a white-painted chair overlooking Cape Cod on a cloudless day.

Writing is cramming in three hundred words because you’ve got fifteen minutes before one of your children wakes up from a nap.

Writing is not rising with the sun, brewing a pot of coffee, slapping your latest royalty check atop the others that still need to be cashed, and leisurely eating your gourmet breakfast before you plop down in your sunlit office.

Writing is often your second source of income–providing you’re making any income at all from it–and the words it produces often follow your horrible commute home.

Writing is not musings from a luxury high-rise, or interviews with Vanity Fair.

Writing is a thousand words thrown down from an airport bench during a layover while you wait, at 3AM, without a soul around.

Writing is not an effortless stride to The Next American Classic.

Writing is simple, honest sweat equity, day after day after day. And you get to watch much of what you love get thrown away.

Writing is not a sure thing.

Writing is almost never a sure thing, despite what you read in that inspiring “interview” conducted by some top-shelf magazine that certainly hadn’t been motivated by said author’s publicist.

Writing is not telling your friends “I’m working on a book”, or “I’m outlining a short story” or “I’ve got this great idea I’m committing to paper this weekend”, or “Someday I’m gonna write that horror tale I thought of”.

Writing is the act of producing a finished story. Everything until that, and after that, could be forgotten or celebrated, but none of it happens without that finished story lying somewhere within your own.