The Hours

I became a writer on June 1, 2010.

I truly believe that becoming a writer is a conscious decision a person can make. Some mark the accomplishment by their first publishing credit or some other writing landmark, but, really, I think it’s nothing more than a conscious decision a person makes. June 1, 2010 was the day I decided I was going to stop becoming a writer and simply be a writer. What that means is that on that day I decided I was going to make time for writing. No excuses. I was going to write.

Some writers adhere to a happyhorse shit “I’ll write when inspiration moves me” philosophy, but that doesn’t work for me because a day becomes a week becomes a month without writing. No, I adhere to the workhorse philosophy that a writer writes every single freakin’ day. Every day. How can a writer not?

I have written at least an hour every single day since June 1, 2010. My streak right now stands at 480 days. In that time, I have accumulated 1,448 hours of writing time (I find that tracking my hours keeps me focused). I have weekly, monthly, and yearly goals for how many hours I spend writing. And it’s not like I’m living a Thoreauvian lifestyle out in the woods or anything. I’ve got a wife and a full-time job to attend to, but I always make the time for writing.

That’s why I can’t stand when other writers tell me they can’t find time to write. Then you can’t be a writer. It’s as simple as that. A writer writes. I’ve jettisoned plenty from my life to free up the hours and it’s paid off. In the last year and four months, I’ve finished a novel, three screenplays, and a dozen short stories and had five of them published.

I never claim to be more talented than any other writer, but I am willing to work harder and I hope that makes the difference. Here’s to the hours.

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~ by themoderntranscendentalist on September 23, 2011.

2 Responses to “The Hours”

  1. Wow!

    I try to write every day, but sometimes I get to a point where every sentence I put down I delete in the next keystroke and then I have to admit that it just isn’t working right now. But I would love to become a more disciplined writer.

    480 straight days is amazing.

  2. Notice I didn’t say anything about the quality of the work I do for that time. Even if I rewrite the same sentence for an hour, hey, that’s still an hour of writing time. I’ve noticed that I have to wade through a lot of crap before I get to the good stuff so the longer I sit at my desk, the better chance I have of reaching the Promised Land.

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