Skip to content

Reflections of a working writer and reader



Write Every Day

Kirsten Ogden at The Kenyon Review has taken all the advice. But what about putting it into practice?

I started off well, but I guess morning writing wasn’t my thing. Neither was afternoon writing, it turns out. (Neither was writing at night!) Go figure. Sitting in that chair is hard. Plus, its been 4 months of rejections for me; no one wants to publish my stuff. I don’t send out often, but last year I did have a lot more luck. It’s a numbers game, I know. But I find it hard to write without an audience. I can usually at least count on my sister to listen to a new poem or story over the phone, but last week I called to read her something and she sounded–distracted. Turns out Wrestlemania! was the focus for the day. How can I compete with Wrestlemania?

3 Responses to “Write Every Day”

  1. Paul says:

    I’ve been going through the same thing of late. Rejections plus a recent bad experience, added to a general sense of apathy/disillusion about writing (mine and those around me) and a realisation that there are so many novels out there, and so many other things I should be doing – Result – lack of application.
    I still want to write, but it’s so much easier posting on various blogs – and that’s writing isn’t it?
    But I’m sure it will pass – because I still want it to.

    jb says: Everything passes, Paul. But when you get down to writing a novel, it’s because you realise there are so many crap novels out there and you are going to get one together which is worth its place in the world. Also, it’s only you who can make yourself do it.
    But I really hope you do. There’s room for one from you.

  2. Paul, thanks for the link back. Speaking of crappy novels, I just read another and thought “C’mon! Kirsten, WRITE IT already!” 🙂

  3. Ann says:

    Eh, I don’t know about all these rules about writing. Sometimes it works better for me to take a few days (weeks) off and work all day (month) a few days after that. Also, I work better at night. I’m too foggy in the morning, most of the time. Although I can edit and rewrite well enough then. I think you have to work somewhat regularly, whatever your schedule is, but I hate to think we are using these rules to judge ourselves and come up wanting. Hey, if we wanted 9 to 5 jobs, we could make a lot more money than most of us do writing.

    jb says: Rules might be a bit strong, Ann. I suppose what people are trying to create is a kind of relaxed mood and ambience in which they don’t have to worry about the practicalities of the work. Might be regular mornings for some, weeks in a B&B for others. For Hemingway it was a cafe and a pencil sharpener. For me it’s been different rituals, changing from time to time over the years as I’ve discovered ways of procrastinating within my settled routine and subsequently had to reinvent it once again. The guiding light has always been the same, however, to give it the best part of every day.
    I’m with you temperamentally and intellectually, though: rules are made to be broken.