Monday, April 12, 2010

What Would You Give Up?

Time got away from me this past weekend. We went to Willycon, a very small SF convention held on campus at Wayne, Nebraska. We always enjoy Willycon because – being such a small convention – the opportunity to get some serious face-to-face time with the guests of honor is very much there.

This year’s Author Guest of Honor was David J Williams. He was a wonderful man, full of common sense and encouragement, like so many authors. One of the things he said in his first panel on ‘the life of a genre writer’ was, you have to decide what you are willing to give up in order to write. I wanted to say, “I would willingly give up housework.” Of course, that’s not acceptable – nobody wants to live in the midst of filth and chaos, and I and my family are no different.

I commented later in the weekend that writing – for me – had become something of an obsession. So … what have I given up? I’ve thought about that in the past 24 hours, and I’ve found a few things. I’ve given up all my other ‘hobbies’ – painting, knitting, embroidery, to name a few. I seldom cook a meal anymore that can’t be shoved in the oven and forgotten for a couple hours, or slapped together in half an hour or less. Bless my family’s patience for putting up with that. And, I reached a point where I could give up my full-time day job. (I retired and only need a part-time job to make up the difference.)

Mr Williams explained that when he started writing, he had a very demanding job that sometimes stretched late into the weekday evenings, but his weekends were devoted to writing. No going out, no social life, just work during the week, and writing on the weekends. It worked for him.

So, if you really want to write, what have you given up to do it? If you weren’t writing, what would you be doing with that time? See ya next week. Trudy

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