What Are You Waiting For? – WFMAD Day 31

 

We’re here!!

The end of WFMAD, Year 5. How was it?

Writing this blog every day turned out to be good discipline for me. I have been a wretched excuse for a blogger in the past year. A blog post is an essay. I would rather work on my novels than write an essay several times a week. But I seem to have no problem posted to Twitter, or to Tumblr, or to Facebook. No essays required there, I guess.

It takes me an average of about four hours to write a WFMAD blog. (Now you know why it takes me so long to write a novel.) I deliberately did not review my previous WFMAD blogs, but I realize that I may have unintentionally replicated some topics. For those of you who have been following for five years, my apologies.

I’m not sure if I’m going to do this again next year because of exactly that issue; there are only so many things one can say about this bizarre little practice of dreaming up worlds and then committing them to paper. I’m thinking about writing a small e-book that would contain whatever it is I think I know about trying to combine life and writing. Not sure.

Would you rather see the e-book or will you be here in August 2013, waiting for the next blog entry?

What did I do this month? Good question.

Along with writing this blog, I’ve been working on my YA novel every day. And we welcomed our first grandchild into the world this month. And we almost finished the mammoth house renovation project that has consumed the past 18 months. And I went to a lot of doctors and I kept the gardens almost weed-free and took care of various and sundry matters for various and sundry relatives and friends.  Took a quick trip to Montreal. Answered a lot of email. Read some great books. Watched Olympics. Ate astounding tomatoes.

Life happens whether you are writing or not. You don’t have to wait for the right time, or that Muse-blessed idea or a fellowship to a writing colony or a winning lottery ticket or anything. You just have to give yourself permission to take seriously your writing dream.

Do you dare?

Why the hell not?

Is it not better to to have tried – to have lived and loved and failed…. but laughed – than to never have lived at all?

You can do this. You have permission.

I double-dog-dare you.

 

Today’s Quote

“Stories may well be lies, but they are good lies that say true things, and which can sometimes pay the rent.”

Neil Gaiman

 

Today’s prompt: How many days did you write this month? What happened to take you off track? How did you feel about that? What did you do the next day to change things? Looking at the next four months, what time of day is the best time for your to write? (You only need fifteen minutes! Write on the toilet, for cripes sakes!)  What writing project do you want to finish before August 1, 2013?

 

Scribble…scribble…scribble…

15 Replies to “What Are You Waiting For? – WFMAD Day 31”

  1. I’ll follow you with whatever choice you make.
    Thanks for a month of thoughtfulness, stretching and, most importantly, fun!

    I loved the discipline of the project and the amazing voice of the author:)

  2. I, too, would happily consume your wisdom in whatever form you choose to share it. I certainly can’t tell you to blog. I don’t blog. I tried it once, maybe twice, and it was hard. I would much rather devote that time and creative energy to my manuscripts as well.

    With that said, it has been a wonderful ride this month. Truly inspiring. Thank you for devoting all that time and energy to fanning the flames of our writerly passions. I hope you’re soon blessed with someone just as inspiring who will turn around and do the same for you!

  3. Thank you so much for this experience. The prompts you gave helped me to look at my wip and help “whip” it into shape. More than that, the encouragement you have given is invaluable. I have on my computer a stick note that says “I promise I’ll work on this manuscript until I think I have it right.” (prompt from 8/26) If someone else likes it, it’s icing on the cake.
    I, too, would participate in either the month long blog or the e-book. Do whatever fills you the most.
    Thank you again.

  4. I really love the message of this post quite a bit. Goodness knows if anyone ever waited for the right moment to begin writing, we wouldn’t have a single book to read. Thanks again for sharing your thoughts. I’ve loved reading them. 🙂

  5. Laurie, thank you for this month. I never knew about WFMAD in previous years, and I’m so happy I stumbled on it in Aught Twelve! Every day for the past month, you’ve given me something to ponder, and/or laugh at, and/or feel encouraged by, and I greatly appreciate your generosity. I can’t wait to read your next YA, and the next one, and the next one… May the road always rise to meet you!

  6. I will be here next year if you do it!!! And I would definitely LOVE the e-book! Can you do both? 😉 Thank you so much for all of this!
    p.s. I have missed your blog since you haven’t been posting regularly (even though I totally understand the time constraints). Even though I mainly tune in for the writing stuff…I kinda miss watching those little chicks grow that you blogged about… was that last year? or year before that?

  7. This was such an incredible experience. I started off using the promts every day, and then ended up using my fifteen minutes (plus lots more) to finish up the first draft of the novel I’ve been working on for months. The dicipline and inspiration really helped me wrap up the story in a timely matter. You gave me the motivation to chase this dream of mine, and I thank you so much for that.
    People always sneer at me when I tell that I write; since I’m only a sophomore and writing technically isn’t the, “cool,” thing to do. It’s not like they view me as a real writer anyway, but you helped me believe in myself, keep going through it all. The thing that I took from this is that I AM a real writer, and I can accomplish anything when I really focus and put time into it. So what if I don’t have the tanned skin and hours of summertime tales that my peers do. I emmerged from August with my first full novel, which has been my goal for years now. Thank you, Laurie. I just adore you.

  8. Laurie,

    Your daily inspiration got me back on track. I transitioned from your 15-minute prompts to my novel . . . and have kept up with hours of daily writing. I now have a solid foundation for a fun, new novel (and rarely have had to write on the toilet).

    And I’d love not an e-book, but a print book about your experiences of writing and life, of motherhood and writing, of promoting and writing, of jogging and writing — whatever feels right. It would go on my shelf between Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott and On Writing by Stephen King.

    I, too, find good blog entries take up much time that could be spent penning the next novel, so have cut back on those myself.

    Thanks for taking your time this month to inform, inspire, entertain and encourage others.

    All best,
    Donna

  9. I am grateful for your blog. Would love a book not ebook. It is my ultimate hope that you will return to challenge us again next year. There is just something so wonderful about knowing I’ve got a post and a push from the Mad WIF waiting for me each day. It was the best mix of spiritual, emotional, and artistic support I so needed.

    Thank you for your generosity.
    Denise

  10. I too would be right there along with you-whatever you choose. Thank you for all that you share! You are truly awesome, stay healthy-keep us posted, we get worried about you.

  11. Hi Laurie,

    Thank you for taking the time to share you thoughts and writing encouragement with us this past month. I’m all for whatever you feel is best for you, whether that’s an e-book, a print book, or blog posts. I’ll be here, no matter what!

    I was with you for a little while during the 2008 WFMAD… at the time my writing life was on shaky ground… lots of doubts about whether or not I should continue to write. So much wrestling with my own insecurities. I just couldn’t embrace the idea of me as a writer and ended up calling it quits by the end of the year.

    Now, four years later, I find myself being drawn to write once again. But this time something is different. My break from writing has made me more determined to write the words down– to finish the story– to keep going and enjoy what I’m doing while pushing through the ‘mucky times’ when the writing is difficult.

    I keep wondering: How much would I have written if I would have kept at it for the last four years? Of course, I can’t turn back time. But just being aware of those empty pages of the past (of what could’ve been) makes me realize how much I really want to fill in the blank pages of the present and future — of what can still be possible. Basically, as you wrote on Day 16: I’ve now made the decision to believe in my dream and my talent and my vision of the story.

    So many of your posts have resonated with me and have helped me to start writing once again. Thank you doesn’t even seem like enough… but I just wanted to say it anyway with the hopes that you’ll understand how much your words have inspired me.

    I’ve now adopted the WFMAD habit, and I’m going to keep at it and see what happens. As you say: Why the hell not?! 🙂

    With heartfelt thanks & gratitude,
    ~L.C.

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