Writing is work. Sitting down to reach that daily word count can be difficult, especially when the rest of life demands attention. It’s hard to justify stepping into an inanimate world of words sometimes.
That’s when I start making excuses. I was too tired to write after work. I couldn’t write because I was so wrapped up in buying Sampson. I didn’t write because I had to go out to get dog food. I had a hundred other things going on, and I just didn’t get in front of my computer.
But none of that changes the simple fact that I didn’t write.
At my full-time job, there is a culture of productivity. They occasionally give out readings that we’re supposed to discuss at our daily and weekly meetings. One reading stated pretty simply that “Earthquakes don’t count.”
It told the story of a large company with offices in California and a prize offered by a new manager for any team which met their quota. A few weeks before the deadline, an earthquake struck the California office. Unfortunately they missed their quota by a couple of points. They lobbied to get the prize anyway and even recruited one of the company’s vice presidents to fight for their cause. But the manager stood his ground. The California office hadn’t met their quota. The next year, despite a slew of natural disasters across the country, every team made their goals.
If I don’t write, then I’m not getting myself any closer to my goal of becoming a published writer. All the excuses in the world won’t make up for that fact. An agent can’t sell my intentions. A publisher can’t make a paperback out of my intentions. I either write and get myself a step closer to publication, or I don’t.
So I’m publishing this here on my blog as a reminder to myself. I have to stop the excuses. I can still have days where life makes writing impossible, but I understand that I’m not getting anywhere closer to my end goal. Earthquakes don’t count.