Writing is a gift.
From the idea that forms unexpectedly in a writer’s mind to the words that flow onto the page to that feeling of knowing what you’ve written resonates with a reader, it’s a gift.
Like any good gift, writing should be thoroughly enjoyed. In the midst of holiday festivities and throughout the year, every day living, be sure to protect and cherish your writing time. Even if it’s just a few minutes, carve out some time for your craft. Especially if writing grounds you, allow yourself time to indulge in this gift. I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels so much healthier and happier when I’ve gotten the right words on the page. Writing is a gift, one we’re meant to enjoy like a child enjoys a new toy on Christmas morning.
On the flip side, like any gift, writing can be indulged to an unhealthy extreme. Sometimes we run the risk of becoming so engrossed in our writing that we miss other gifts—the fellowship of family and friends, the laughter of a child, the mystery of the stranger in the checkout line in front of us. Resentment can creep in when our fingers haven’t hit the keyboard in days, because, as we all know, Writers write.
Every day, some would add.
The harsh reality is that sometimes life prohibits writing, and while writer’s block can keep a writer from producing words, writer’s guilt can keep a writer from fully enjoying life.
So I find the writing life all about balance. Some days, the words and the writing time come easy. Other days, I have time, but the words don’t come—or words, but no time. This, too, is a gift, this learning that life and writing coexist, that while writing grounds me, I am not defined by how much I write or how good it is.
As you head into the holidays, I hope you will find both time to write and perspective to enjoy life’s beautiful and varied gifts.
Lisa Dunn co-facilitates the Rock Hill Chapter of SCWW. When she isn’t homeschooling her children, she writes novels for Young Adults. Her first two books, Grit of Berth and Stone and Heir of Koradin were published by Anaiah Press in 2015. The final book in the Chasmaria series, Child of Thresh, will release in August 2016. Samples of her current work-in-progress, a contemporary Young Adult titled Commando Grace, won WRiTE CLUB 2016, an anonymous writing contest hosted by D.L. Hammons. Lisa is on Facebook and Twitter, and blogs at https://waitingforaname.wordpress.com.